Right since the beginning of last year, there had been reports about the merger of Vodafone India and Idea Cellular. While those reports were initially refuted, Vodafone Group later confirmed that it was in talks with Idea Cellular for the merger of its Indian arm. And, later in March 2017, both the telcos – Vodafone India and Idea Cellular – confirmed their merger. Well, fast forward to today, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular have announced that their merger is finally complete.
Vodafone through a press release has announced that its merger with Idea Cellular is finally complete. This new merged entity is called Vodafone Idea Limited, and, it will be led by Balesh Sharma as the CEO and Kumar Mangalam Birla as the Chairman and a member of the Board of Directors.
This merger of Vodafone India and Idea Cellular has created the country’s largest telecom operator that has a subscriber base of more than 408 Million. In a press note sent to the media, Vodafone also said that this merger is expected to generate annual synergy of ₹140 Billion, with a net present value of approximately ₹700 Billion.
Commenting on this merger, Mr. Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairman of Aditya Birla Group and Vodafone Idea Limited, said, “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.”
Welcoming customers to the new telecom network, Mr. 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.”
Key Highlights of Vodafone Idea Limited – a merged entity of Vodafone India and Idea Cellular:
- Subscriber base of over 408 Million (as of June 18)
- RMS 32.2%, leadership in 9 circles (as of Q1 FY19)
- CMS 41.1%, leadership in 12 circles (as of June 18)
- Over 2,00,000 enterprise customers
- Over 3,40,000 Broadband sites with connectivity across the country
- Network outreach to 92% of population with over 2,00,000 unique GSM cell sites
- Enhanced coverage across ~5,00,000 towns and villages
- 1.7 Million retail touch points
- 50,000 channel partners
- Footprint of 15,000 branded stores