Sunday, November 1, 2015

#MTS merges into #Anil Ambani-led #RCOM

Anil Ambani-owned Reliance Communications' board has approved the merger of Sistema’s Indian wireless business, carried on by Sistema ShyamTeleservices Ltd. (SSTL) under the MTS brand, into RCOM.
RCOM will acquire approx. 9 million customers and approx. Rs. 1,500 crore of annualrevenues by virtue of the transaction.

In addition, RCOM will acquire SSTL’s most valuable and superior 800 / 850 MHz band spectrum, ideally suited for 4G LTE services, to complement its own unique nationwide footprint of minimum 5 MHz contiguous 800 / 850 MHz spectrum aggregating 148.75 MHz.
This will extend the validity of RCOM’s spectrum in 800 / 850 MHz band in 8 important circles by a period of 12 years from 2021 till 2033 (Delhi, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka,Kerala, Kolkata, UP (West) and West Bengal).
As result of the demerger, SSTL will acquire and hold a 10% equity stake in RCOM. In addition,RCom will assume the liability to pay the DoT instalments for SSTL's spectrum, amounting to Rs. 392 crore per annum for the next 10 years.
Gurdeep Singh, President & Chief Executive Officer, Consumer Business, RelianceCommunications, said, “We are delighted to welcome Sistema Shyam TeleServices Ltd. as avalued shareholder and partner in Reliance Communications Ltd.
The combination of our wireless businesses, through the demerger of SSTL wireless business into RCOM for stock consideration, will generate significant capex and opex synergies for mutual benefit.
The Indian data market is witnessing explosive growth, and SSTL's proven strengths in that space will further enhance RCOM's capabilities in delivering a superior experience to our valued customers. We are pleased that the addition of SSTL's valuable spectrum holdings in the 800 - 850 MHz band will strengthen RCOM's spectrum portfolio, and extend our ability to provide world class 4G LTE services to our customers in 8 important circles in the country till the year 2033, he added.”

Mikhail Shamolin, President and CEO of Sistema, said, “The merger of SSTL and RCOM's telecom businesses is a milestone event. Despite the numerous challenges the sector faced in recent years, the combination of two leading data service providers is a clear sign of progress for the Indian telecom industry. We are confident that SSTL’s entry into the equity capital of RCOM as a strategic investor will strengthen the competitive position of the combined company and provide subscribers with superior experience by fasttracking the growth of LTE technology in India.

SSTL's acquisition would extend the combined entity's license validity period, future-proofing nearly half RCom's telecom circles which expire by 2022-23. RCom has 21 circles which expire by this year, while West Bengal expires in 2017. It acquired Assam and the Northeast in the February auction, which will last till 2035