Shares of Idea Cellular surged a massive 26 per cent on the bourses today after the global telecom giant Vodafone confirmed that it is in discussion to merge its India mobile business with Aditya Birla group firm. On BSE, the stock jumped 25.90 per cent to close at Rs 97.95. During the day, it gained 29.2 per cent to Rs 100.50. The scrip settled at Rs 98, up 25.64 per cent on NSE.
Following the rally, the market capitalisation of Idea Cellular rose by Rs 7,257.41 crore to Rs 35,278.55 crore. On the volume front, 1.53 crore shares were traded on BSE while 15.48 crore scrips changed hands on NSE. Rival Bharti Airtel ended the day on BSE at Rs 347.65, up 7.48 per cent. On NSE, it settled the day up 7 per cent at Rs 346.40.
In a BSE filing, Idea Cellular said it constantly evaluates various opportunities to enhance stakeholders’ value. “As part of the exercise, the company has been in preliminary discussions with Vodafone,” it said. Idea emphasised that the fundamental premise of preliminary discussion is based on “equal rights” between the Aditya Birla group and Vodafone in the combined entity.
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“In view of the fact that the discussion is at preliminary stage, the company is not in a position to share any further details… Further, there is no certainty that the discussion with them will result in any agreement,” the company said.
“Vodafone confirms that it is in discussions with the Aditya Birla group about an all-share merger of Vodafone India
(excluding Vodafone’s 42 per cent stake in Indus Towers) and Idea,” Vodafone said in a statement. Any merger will be effected through issuance of new shares in Idea to Vodafone and would result in de-consolidation of Vodafone India, it added.