Norwegian telecom group Telenor yesterday said it has completed acquisition of Lakshdeep Investment and Finance’s 26 percent stake in Telewings (Uninor), making the Indian telecom operator its fully-owned subsidiary. Also Read - After Vodafone-Idea merger talks, Telenor in talks with Aircel-RCom for merger: Report
The company had earlier disclosed that it will be investing about Rs 780 crore to raise its stake to 100 percent in Telewings, which operates under the Uninor brand. As a result, Telenor now takes full ownership of Uninor. The process was finalised after Telenor received approval from the Indian government’s Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) to increase its stake from 74 percent to 100 percent, Telenor said in a statement. “Telenor Group has a long-term view on India, and we are encouraged by the strong growth of our Indian operation. The company continues to capture market share every month and is leading in new subscriber additions in many of its circles,” Telenor Group Executive Vice President Sigve Brekke said in a statement. Brekke is also chairman of the board of Telewings. Also Read - Uninor rebrands itself as Telenor in India
Telewings’ revenues jumped more than 40 percent in the first half of 2014 compared to the same period last year. Earlier this year, the company expanded its service portfolio from voice to basic internet services. Close to 20 per cent of the company’s subscribers are now active internet users. Telenor’s Indian arm has operation in six service areas – Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Maharashtra, UP East and West. Also Read - Uninor and Huawei enter into a Rs 1,200 crore network contract
The company said that it will also launch services in Assam early next year. The company has over 4 crore subscribers across six service areas where it operates.