When Kumar Birla & Vodafone Group CEO met Telecom minister

After announcing the largest merger in the Indian telecom space, Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairman of the Aditya Birla Group that owns Idea Cellular, and Vodafone Group Plc CEO Vittorio Colao recently met Communications Minister Manoj Sinha .

According to sources, Birla and Colao sought the government’s advice regarding smoothening of the merger process.

Vodafone India and Aditya Birla Group-promoted Idea Cellular on Monday announced their much-awaited amalgamation, with Kumar Birla as the Chairman of the merged entity.

“Vodafone Group and Idea Cellular announced they have reached an agreement to combine their operations in India (excluding Vodafone’s 42% stake in Indus Towers) to create India’s largest telecom operator,” a joint statement by the companies said on Monday.

“The combined company would become the leading communications provider in India with almost 400 million customers, 35% customer market share and 41% revenue market share,” it added.

The merger will create an entity with over Rs 80,000 crore revenue.

“Vodafone will own 45.1% of the combined company after transferring a stake of 4.9% to the promoters of Idea and/or their affiliates for Rs 3,874 crore in cash concurrent with the completion of the amalgamation,” the statement had said.

“The promoters of Idea will hold 26% of the company and the balance will be held by the public.”

The merged entity will have around a 406 million subscriber base, replacing the current dominant player Bharti Airtel (around 269 million customers).

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