Data & Voice

DoT Likely to Approve Vodafone-Idea Merger

The Department of Telecom (DoT) is likely to approve the merger between Idea Cellular and Vodafone India by the end of this month. An anonymous official said in his statement to ET “The final approval should come within this month.” When this approval is passed, the Idea and Vodafone merged entity will become the largest data carrier in the country in terms of market share and subscribers. As we’re already aware of, post the merger, the company will be owned equally by the UK based Vodafone and India based Aditya Birla Group. Presently, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular rank number second and third respectively on the list of telecom operators in the country.

Vodafone India has close to 215 million subscribers as of February 2018, while Idea Cellular has crossed the 200 million mark as per the COAI subscriber data released last month. And the number will increase even bigger in March 2018 as the telcos are reportedly adding a large number of Aircel customers onto the network.

That said, the merged entity will have close to 420 million subscriber base, making it the leading entity in the country. Bharti Airtel currently has close to 295 million subscribers, but the addition of Telenor and Tata Teleservices subscriber base will boost its subscriber base too.

The Vodafone-Idea Merger which has already been approved by NCLT, Sebi and CCI before it came before the DoT. The merged entity as stated will have 420 million customers, nearly 42% customer market share (CMS) and nearly 37% revenue market share (RMS) this will render the merged company to have an upper hand in comparison to Jio which has 168 million subscribers and over 16% CMS and 15.3% RMS, also another big operator in India, Airtel has a CMS of 29.5% and an RMS of 31.5%. ?Both the telcos already announced the leadership team.

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