Idea Cellular, Videocon Telecom call off Rs 3,310 cr spectrum deal

Idea Cellular and Videocon Telecommunications said they have agreed to terminate the agreement regarding spectrum sale in Gujarat and UP (West) with immediate effect.

Idea Cellular to merge with Vodafone? shares surge over 7 per cent
Idea Cellular shares surged over 6 per cent on Tuesday after CNBC TV 18 quoting sources reported that it is exploring options and is in talks for a possible merger with Vodafone. (Photo: Reuters)

Idea Cellular and Videocon Telecommunications have mutually agreed to call off their Rs 3,310-crore spectrum deal for two telecom circles.

In a joint statement released on Wednesday, the two companies said they have agreed to terminate the agreement regarding spectrum sale in Gujarat and UP (West) with immediate effect.

Ideas in November last year had announced to buy airwaves held by Videocon in these two circles for Rs 3,310 crore, which was billed as the first spectrum trading deal of the country.

“Idea Cellular (Buyer) and Videocon Telecommunications Limited (Seller) today mutually agreed to terminate their earlier agreement regarding ‘Transfer of Right to Use 1800 MHz Spectrum’ in two service areas with immediate effect,” a joint statement of the companies said.

On November, 25, 2015, the Board of Directors of Idea had empowered the company to enter into an acquisition agreement for right to use 1800 MHz spectrum of Videocon Telecommunications in telecom service areas of Gujarat and U.P. (West) for an aggregate consideration of Rs 3,310 crore, it added.

“No joint intimation of this transfer agreement for right to use spectrum under spectrum trading guidelines was filed with DoT, by the parties. Also, there is no cost implication to Idea on termination of the aforesaid agreement,” the statement added.

Videocon had acquired spectrum in 1800MHz band, known as 2G spectrum, in these two service areas for a total of Rs 1,329 crore in November 2012 and made upfront payment of Rs 438.57 crore to the government.

Meanwhile, Idea said it continues to aggressively launch its high speed mobile broadband 4G LTE services. The company today also launched its 4G LTE services in the 10th telecom service area of Maharashtra & Goa, from Nagpur city.

Idea said it owns 3G and 4G spectrum in 17 service areas representing 87 per cent of its revenue (4G coverage 61 per cent of revenue), and now offers high speed mobile broadband services (3G & 4G) in around 4,500 towns and 60,000 villages.

The company said it remains on track to launch 4G LTE services in 750 key towns across these 10 telecom circles latest by end of June 2016.

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First published on: 17-03-2016 at 10:50 IST