NEW DELHI — British telecom company Vodafone's Indian unit has announced a merger with Idea Cellular, a local company, creating the country's largest telecom operator with nearly 400 million customers.

A joint statement from the companies Mar. 20 said Vodafone will own 45.1 percent of the combined company and Idea will have a 26 percent stake, while the rest will be owned by public shareholders after the merger, which is expected to be completed next year.

At present, Bharti Airtel is India's biggest telecom player. The entry of Reliance Jio has led to a consolidation in the Indian telecom sector.

The merger values Vodafone India at 828 billion rupees ($12.4 billion) and Idea at 722 billion rupees ($10.8 billion), the statement said.

Idea Cellular is owned by India's Aditya Birla Group.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.