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Old 03-30-2010, 07:57 PM
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Default Airtel acquires Zain's Africa business for $10.7 billion


In the largest ever telecom takeover by an Indian firm, Bharti Airtel has signed a deal with Kuwait-based Zain Telecom to buy its African business for $10.7 billion (about Rs 48,000 crore).

The acquisition, the second largest by an Indian entity after Tatas' Corus deal, would make Sunil Mittal-led Bharti the world's seventh largest mobile operator with a total subscriber base of about 179 million. It would have estimated revenues of $13 billion. Zain has operations in 17 African countries and Bharti has acquired all, but those in Sudan and Morocco.

The African business would widen Bharti's reach, which was hitherto restricted to Asia and Indian Ocean region with businesses in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Seychelles.
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Old 03-30-2010, 07:57 PM
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Announcing the deal, Sunil Mittal said, "This agreement is a landmark for global telecom industry and game changer for Bharti.

"This transaction is a pioneering step towards South-South cooperation and strengthening of ties between India and Africa. With this acquisition, Bharti Airtel will be transformed into a truly global telecom company with operations across 18 countries fulfilling our vision of building a world-class multinational,” said Mittal.
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Old 03-30-2010, 07:58 PM
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Zain has operations in 17 African countries and Bharti has acquired all, but those in Sudan and Morocco.

The African business would widen Bharti's reach, which was hitherto restricted to Asia and Indian Ocean region with businesses in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Seychelles.
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Old 03-30-2010, 07:58 PM
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Bharti Airtel has long been looking to expand into African market but was unable to do so. After twice wooing but failing to clinch a merger with South Africa's MTN, Bharti's ambitions to enter into vast African market has now been fulfilled.

The Zain deal would also catapult the Indian entity into the league of world's top 10 telecom players. Bharti would be placed at seventh position with combined subscriber base of close to 170 million.
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