Turkcell poised for Indian acquisition?

31 Oct 2008

According to India’s Economic Times, Turkish cellco Turkcell is currently in talks to acquire a 51% stake in Datacom Solutions in a deal reportedly worth around USD2.2 billion. It is claimed that any such deal however will not move forward until the issues between Datacom’s existing controlling parties are resolved; the Dhoots of Videocon and Mahendra Nahata, chairman of the HFCL Group, are understood to have disagreed about investment in the operator, with reports in August 2008 that the former had failed in an attempt to buy out the 36% stake HFCL holds in Datacom. Under the expected terms of the deal Turkcell would take a 51% stake in the cellco, whilst Videcon would continue to hold 49%. Datacom was awarded a pan-India universal access service licence (UASL) in January 2008, and currently holds spectrum for thirteen of the 22 circles of operation in the country; network rollout for the operator has been delayed from its previous target date of 15 December 2008 due to the management difference at the company, with work now expected to commence around April 2009.