Aditya Birla Group has announced Vodafone India and Idea Cellular has completed the merger to create India’s largest telecom company with currently 408 million active users. Under this partnership, Idea Cellular will be now renamed as Vodafone Idea Limited.
With this, the company has Kumar Mangalam Birla as the Chairman, while the CEO will be Balesh Sharma. In this joint entity, Vodafone Group owns 45.2 percent stake, while the Aditya Birla Group holds 26 percent stake. The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) on Thursday had approved the merger of both the telecom operators. With this, Vodafone Idea Limited has now become the largest telecom operator in India displacing Bharti Airtel from its top position.
“Today, we have created India’s leading telecom operator. It is truly a historic moment. And this is much more than just about creating a large business. It is about our Vision of empowering and enabling a New India and meeting the aspirations of the youth of our country. The “Digital India”, as our Honourable Prime Minister describes it, is a monumental nation-building opportunity. As Vodafone Idea, we are partnering in this initiative by building a formidable company of international repute, scale and standards,” said Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairman Aditya Birla Group and Vodafone Idea Limited.
With this, the new company will have a network outreach to 92 percent of population with over 200,000 unique GSM cell sites. It also also provides enhanced coverage across 500,000 towns and villages. Both the companies will integrate and optimise its network in a phased manner across circles.
Customers will enjoy a variety of digital services and solutions including mobile payments, Internet of Things (IoT), advanced enterprise offerings and entertainment, conveniently accessible via digital channels as well as extensive on-ground presence through 15,000 branded outlets and 1.7 million retail touchpoints across the country.
Welcoming customers to India’s leading telecom network, Balesh Sharma, CEO, Vodafone Idea Limited, said, “As India’s leading telecom operator with two popular and loved brands, the company has the scale and resources to ensure sustainable customer choice and introduce new technologies. We are committed to offer both our retail and enterprise customers an excellent experience while fulfilling their evolving digital and connectivity needs via new products, services and solutions. We will offer them more network coverage, more value and more excitement. My team and I look forward to your continuing support and invite you to enjoy the Vodafone Idea experience.”