The country’s largest telecom operator, Bharti Airtel, on Thursday said that it has got the approval of Sebi and the stock exchanges on its acquisition of the Indian business of Norwegian telecom operator Telenor. Bharti said it received the approval of the capital markets regulator, BSE and NSE for the proposed scheme of merger between Airtel and Telenor (India) Communications.
Both Bharti and Telenor on Thursday also filed the joint company application before the National Company Law Tribunal’s (NCLT) New Delhi bench for approval of the merger. It is also subject to other statutory approvals including that from the fair trade regulator, the Competition Commission of India.
On February 23, Bharti announced that it is acquiring the Indian arm of Telenor in a no-cash deal, a move that will not only increase its revenue market share to more than 35%, but also strengthen it in Gujarat, Maharashtra, UP (East) and UP (West) circles where its RMS trails the national average.
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The announcement comes at a time when the telecom industry is witnessing an unprecedented churn following the entry of Reliance Jio forcing market leaders like Vodafone India and Idea Cellular to take the merger route. Jio’s entry also forced other operators like debt-laden Reliance Communication and Aircel to work towards consolidating their operations.