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India: Telco regs wants M&A overhaul to consolidate 12 wireless rivals

 |  September 22, 2014

Indian telecommunications officials are calling for an overhaul of the nation’s mergers and acquisitions rules to promote consolidation in the wireless industry, which is currently saturated with 12 competitors, say reports.

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has stressed the need for the nation to cut down the number of players. “No jurisdiction in the world has 12 operators,” the watchdog said. “Mostly the countries have five or four telecom players and at some places two. For this to happen [in India], merger and acquisition guidelines have to be reworked.”

The remarks were made by the TRAI chairman Rahul Khullar.

Competition officials have recently reworked M&A guidelines to allow mergers that would result in a company with up to 50 percent of the market share. But those rules have not helped the wireless market; Khullar says some of the 12 competitors are “bleeding to death and it has to stop.”

Wireless operators appear keen on merging as well, say reports. Vodafone India, for example, has previously suggested that wireless companies be allowed to buy certain assets, like spectrum, from a company, without acquiring the actual company itself.

Full content: Business Today

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