Telecommunications company Bharti Airtel said it would buy Internet services provider Tikona Digital Networks' 4G business in a deal worth Rs. 1,600 crores (around $244.20 million).
The deal includes acquisition of Tikona's Broadband Wireless Access spectrum and 350 sites in five telecom circles, Airtel said in an exchange filing.
In a separate emailed statement, Airtel said that Tikona has 20MHz spectrum in the 2300MHz band in Gujarat, UP (East), UP (West), Rajasthan, and Himachal Pradesh circles. India's largest telecom operator added that it plans to roll out high speed 4G services on the newly acquired spectrum in the five circles immediately after the closure of the transaction, which is subject to regulatory.
The acquisition in Gujarat, UP (East), UP (West), and Himachal Pradesh will be undertaken by Airtel, while in the Rajasthan circle, it will be accomplished through Airtel subsidiary Bharti Hexacom. The company added that post-acquisition, the combined spectrum holding in these five circles will be within the spectrum caps prescribed by the Government.
Airtel adds the acquisition will help it fill BWA spectrum gaps in the 2300MHz band in Rajasthan, UP (East) and UP (West), while in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh, it will take its overall BWA spectrum holding to 30MHz each in these circles. Post completion of the deal, Airtel will have 30MHz in the 2300MHz band in 13 circles.
Gopal Vittal, MD & CEO (India & South Asia), Bharti Airtel, said, "Airtel's continued focus on strengthening its 4G capabilities across multiple spectrum bands will be complemented with the BWA spectrum acquisition from Tikona. We believe that combining our capacities in TD-LTE and FD-LTE will further bolster our network, and help us provide unmatched high-speed wireless broadband experience to our customers. We remain committed to our vision of leading India's digital revolution by offering world-class and affordable telecom services through a robust spectrum portfolio spread across multiple bands."
Written with inputs from Reuters