Unitech set for wireless venture stake sale?

14 Oct 2008

Indian real estate developer Unitech is in talks with Norwegian telecom group Telenor with a view to the sale of a stake in the former’s telecoms venture, Unitech Wireless, Reuters is claiming, citing financial market and industry sources. The report claims that Telenor, which already has operations in Pakistan and Bangladesh, is close to finalising the deal, with one source noting, ‘The deal has been on for some time and it’s almost been wrapped up. Barring last minute hitches, we should see it through.’ A second source with knowledge of the deal alleged that Unitech was also in talks with a second unnamed European telecoms firm, claiming, ‘You will see an announcement in the next ten days, whoever it is.’ Additionally, India’s Communications and IT ministers is believed to have been informed that Unitech had almost finalised a foreign partner.

Unitech Wireless, which holds a pan-India licence, is set to launch services by March 2009, and it is understood that parent company Unitech is aiming to raise between USD1 billion and USD2 billion from the sale of at least a 40% stake in the venture.

India, Telenor Group