Airtel's five year long acquisition spree continues with Telenor India
Bharti Airtel has entered into an agreement with Norwegian multinational telecommunications company Telenor South Asia to buy its India operations housed under Telenor India.
While the deal has yet to go through regulatory approvals, as part of the agreement, Airtel said it will acquire Telenor India’s running operations in seven circles.
Telenor India has 44 million subscribers while that of Airtel India stand at 269 million.
The telecom major has acquired a total of six companies and spectrum in a span of five years, each growing its database in India.
The acquisition of Telenor, the company claimed would add an additional spectrum in its 1800 MHz band.
The circles that Airtel will acquire from Telenor are - Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra, Gujarat, UP (East), UP (West) and Assam.
The company said that these circles represent a high population concentration and therefore offer a high potential for growth.
“It will also enable Airtel to further bolster its strong spectrum foot-print in these seven circles, with the addition of 43.4 MHz spectrum in the 1800 MHz band,” Airtel said.
Gopal Vittal, Managing Director and CEO (India and South Asia), Bharti Airtel, said, “The agreement underlines our commitment to lead India’s digital revolution by offering world-class and affordable telecom services through a robust spectrum portfolio spread across multiple bands.”
Going back five years to 2012, Airtel was striking up a deal with the wireless business services and US chipmaker – Qualcom.
In October 2013, the company announced that it has completed 100% acquisition for an estimated sum of Rs 1,008.1 crore.
The company said that it had acquired Delhi, Mumbai, Haryana and Kerala telecom circles from the deal.
At the time, Airtel was just getting started with its 4G business in Bangalore, Pune, Kolkata, Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula.
Airtel said that it entered into a definitive agreement with former BPL Mobile Communications, Loop Mobile in June 2014.
The company said that it had acquired infrastructure of Loop but not the spectrum.
The deal was awaiting closure in 2014 and media reports said that it had been held off on account of the heavy debt Airtel was to inherit with the deal.
Loop Mobile was nearly Rs 400 crore in debt and Airtel had offered Rs 700 crore for its acquisition.
Augere Wireless Broadband India
On February 16, 2017 Airtel said that it had completed the acquisition deal of Augere Wirless Broadband India which was initiated in 2015.
The company said that it had acquired Augere’s 2300 Mhz band in the Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh (MPCG) circle.
Airtel will seek to expand its 4G services in this circle as it had won this spectrum for Rs 124.66 crore in 2010 but had not yet rolled out services.
Former Videocon Mobile Services, was an Indian cellular service provider that offered GSM mobile services in India and bought over by Airtel in March 2016.
Airtel acquired the company’s Bihar, Gujarat, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, UP (East) and UP (West) telecom circles in the deal.
Aircel Dishnet Wireless
In April last year Airtel had said that it was going to buy Aircel’s 4G spectrum for a sum of Rs 3,500 crore in eight telecom zones.
Airtel said that it had acquired Tamil Nadu (including Chennai), Bihar, Jammu & Kashmir, West Bengal, Assam, North East, Orissa and and Andhra Pradesh from this deal.
Among these mergers and acquisitions the company had also merged with other startups and financial technology companies over the years.
Just yesterday the company said that it had acquired fintech startup – Seynse. The deal would enhance its ‘in-house data science capabilities,’ the company said.