Airtel’s fund-raise plans give power to go extra mile, tap large opportunities: Sunil Mittal

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August 30, 2021 5:38 PM

Mittal said the industry has been urging the government to address some pressing issues "inhibiting" continued investments in the sector and added that the taxes on the industry remain high.

Mittal also said the industry has been urging the government to attend to some pressing issues inhibiting continued investments in the sector, given the negative-to-low returns.Mittal also said the industry has been urging the government to attend to some pressing issues inhibiting continued investments in the sector, given the negative-to-low returns.

Airtel’s Rs 21,000 crore fund-raising plans will give the firm the fuel to shift to a higher gear and tap large opportunities by accelerating investments in the rollout of 5G services, fibre, and data centre business, its Chairman Sunil Mittal said on Monday.

Mittal said the industry has been urging the government to address some pressing issues “inhibiting” continued investments in the sector and added that the taxes on the industry remain high.

“For every Rs 100 of revenue, Rs 35 go in various forms of levies. We hope that as we step up and do our part, the government will also favourably look at some of the genuine demands of the industry, enabling a multiplier effect and positive outcome,” Mittal said in an investor call on the company’s fundraising plans.

Airtel “has the opportunity to be the tip of the spear for the new digital economy and take India into the next phase of growth”, he added. The investments would be channelised in areas like 5G, fibre, and data centre business, he said.

The capital raise will give the company the “fuel to grow” and “go extra mile” to leverage opportunities that are “around the corner”, he said.

“This capital will help improve the leverage position for the company and simultaneously provide the fuel to accelerate investments across several parts of our portfolio to drive for competitive and profitable growth,” Mittal said.

The telecom czar further estimated that the industry’s ARPUs (Average Revenue Per User) would reach Rs 200 per user per month by the end of the current financial year and eventually move to Rs 300.
Bharti Airtel’s board on Sunday approved raising up to Rs 21,000 crore by way of the rights issue, at a price of Rs 535 per share.

The rights entitlement ratio entails one equity share for every 14 equity shares held by eligible shareholders as on the record date (to be notified later).

The promoter and promoter group of the company would collectively subscribe to the full extent of their aggregate rights entitlement. The company has informed that they will also subscribe to any unsubscribed shares in the issue.
Promoter holding in the company stands at about 55.8 per cent, while public holds 44.09 per cent.

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