Vodafone draws a line under Indian experiment with $1.2bn towers sale

Vodafone draws a line under Indian experiment with $1.2bn towers sale

Vodafone draws a line under Indian experiment with $1.2bn towers sale

Mint had reported in February that Idea Cellular was in talks to sell its tower assets in two separate deals thereby marking its complete exit from the tower business in which ATC had emerged the frontrunner to buy around 11,000 standalone towers from Idea.

Shares of Idea were trading 2.78 per cent down to Rs 94.35 a piece on BSE.

As industry operating tariffs tumble, voice and data volume growth partially compensated the steep rate fall.

As per the terms of the transaction, Vodafone India will receive Rs. 38.5 billion while Idea will get Rs. 40 billion.

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The company said its while broadband data usage almost doubled, the rate realisation "continued its free fall" during the three months ended September.

Both Vodafone and Idea had earlier this year announced their plans to merge into a single entity.

Vodafone India MD Sunil Sood had earlier said the merger of the two companies was on track for completion in 2018.

Idea on Monday reported a consolidated net loss of Rs 1,106.8 crore for the second quarter of the current fiscal.

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The Board of Idea Cellular at its meeting held on 13 November 2017 has approved the sale of the Company's standalone tower business held by its wholly owned subsidiary, Idea Cellular Infrastructure Services (ICISL) to ATC Telecom Infrastructure. And also counter the bruising price war triggered by Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Jio Infocomm.

Besides, the depreciation and amortisation charge increased to Rs 2,114.3 crore and interest and financing cost rose to Rs 1,182.9 crore as the company continued to aggressively invest in expanding its 4G footprint, the statement added.

Idea, India's No. 3 wireless carrier posted a loss of 11.07 billion rupees ($169.45 million) in the quarter ended September 30, compared with a profit of 915 million rupees a year earlier.

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