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Bharti near buyout of Qualcomm’s Indian division

|May 16 2012 |Industry News, Mobile Operators, Airtel


As per two people acquainted with the matter, Qualcomm Inc. has asked Bharti Airtel Ltd, the nation’s biggest cellular phone operator, to make a payment of around Rs.5,000 crore for its Indian division as the two firms seek to end discussions by the coming two weeks.

“Bharti may purchase the unit in instalments over two years,” the sources stated, refusing to be named as the facts are confidential.

Under the plan, Bharti Airtel Ltd would get hold of a 26% holding stake in the division, presently possessed by Tulip Telecom Ltd and Global Holding Corp., and Qualcomm will hold the major stake (51%) of the unit for abiut two years after that.

Qualcomm, the largest manufacturer of cellular phone chips, got hold of frequency authorizations in cities that comprises the national capital and Mumbai during June 2010, paying up Rs 4,910 crore for spectrum, which permits cell phone users to transfer video at better paces.

Sources with knowledge of the matter stated that the San Diego, California-based firm was apportioned spectrum in May.

Cellular phone operators in the Indian market comprising Bharti Airtel and Vodafone India Ltd are making attempts to enhance proceeds by selling services including video streaming as profits go up.

Tulip Telecom and Global Holding made a payment of around Rs 140 crore each for their 13% equity stakes in Qualcomm’s Indian entity during the year 2010. Qualcomm holds the staying 74% stake.

Dimple Kapur, a spokesperson for Qualcomm, didn’t at once react to an electronic mail or phone call looking for statement on the sale.

On the other hand, Representatives for Bharti Airtel and Global Holding refused to remark.

In a phone interview, Tulip Telecom chairman Hardeep Singh Bedi stated, “Qualcomm as the major partner will take all decisions with respect to bringing in any operator partners.”

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