Stepping up its game over yet to be launched Reliance Jio, India’s top telecom operator Bharti Airtel plans buy 4G spectrum from Aircel in eight telecom circles.
A Rs 3,500 crore deal, will strengthen Airtel’s position on the lucrative 4G LTE services in India with pan-India presence.
Airtel plans to buy Aircel’s 4G spectrum in the 2300 MHz frequency band in Tamil Nadu (including Chennai), Bihar, Jammu & Kashmir, West Bengal, Assam, North East, Andhra Pradesh and Orissa telecom circles.
For Aircel, this deal will be a lifesaver as its will considerably reduce the debt of around Rs 18,000 crore and ultimately fulfil a condition for its merger with Reliance Communications.
The deals made possible after the government liberalized the trading and sharing of airwaves among telecom operators to meet up their demands on scarce airwaves.
With this deal Airtel will expand its 4G footprint from 18 telecom circles to complete 22 telecom circles, closing the gap between Reliance Jio, the
only telecom operator with pan-India 4G spectrum holding.
Earlier, Airtel acquired Videocon Telecom‘s spectrum in six telecom circles including Gujarat, Bihar, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh (East) and Uttar Pradesh (West) in a Rs 4,428 crore worth deal.