Airtel buys 49% stake in Qualcomm for 4G services

We earlier heard that Airtel might be interested in buying a certain amount of stake in Qualcomm for 4G services. Well Airtel has today confirmed that it has acquired 49% stake in Qualcomm’s 4G business in India for $165 million which is about Rs.900 crore.


Airtel already has 4 circles under its belt including Punjab, Maharashtra, Kolkata and Karnataka and with this acquisition, Airtel will now have hands on Qualcomm’s licenses in India including Delhi, Mumbai, Haryana and Kerala circles which Qualcomm had won through an auction in June, 2010 and paid Rs 4,912.54 crore.

The deal is in two parts with 26% equity interest held by Global Holding Corporation and Tulip Telecom and the rest by way of subscription of fresh equity in those entities. We are also hearing that Tulip Telecom Ltd has already divested its 13% equity stake in Qualcomm Broadband Wireless Access (BWA) venture to Airtel.

The agreement says that once commercial operations are launched, Airtel would assume complete ownership and financial responsibility for the broadband wireless access (BWA) entities by the end of 2014.