Sistema to Acquire Aircel for $3 Billion, Largest Telecom Deal After Vodafone-Hutch.


7 Apr 2011
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Russian conglomerate company, Sistema is reportedly making plans to buy Aircel. Reportedly, 74% of the total stake of Aircel is now with Malaysia based Maxis communications and the Russian-based Sistema is pitching in take over the Indian operations of Aircel from Maxis Communications.

Sistema has already entered the Indian market under the MTS brand name and is operating on CDMA networks. The company’s Indian partner is Shyam Telecom.

MTS is one of the carriers facing the possibility of license rejection in the telecom licensing scam. MTS has close to 16 million subscribers across India as per the latest reports. Aircel on the other hand has a significant base of 65 million subscribers in India. The official announcement is expected to be made as soon as the restructuring process is completed as per unofficial sources.

One of the spokesperson of Sistema-Shyam TeleServices stated, “Immediate priority is regarding the seeking more clarity on spectrum-related regulations from the government and to look at the outcome of the curative petition filed in the Supreme Court”. One of the Aircel officials stated that the company is not aware of any developments regarding the take over from Sistema.

If these rumors are anything to go by, the deal could become the second largest transaction in the Indian Telecom Sector. The largest transaction that took place in the telecom sector in India is the overtaking of Hutchison Essar by Vodafone for $11.7 billion on the year 2007. It has to be seen whether these rumors will turn out to be true in the coming days.

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