NEW DELHI :
The department of telecommunications has accepted Bharti Airtel’s application to enhance foreign investment in the company which will allow foreign portfolio investors and foreign institutional investors to invest up to 74% of the paid up capital of the company.
“The company has received the approval from DoT vide its letter dated 20 January for increasing the limit of foreign investment up to 100% of the paid up capital of the company,” Bharti Airtel said in an exchange filing on Tuesday.
The aforesaid approval read together with the RBI approval dated July 3, 2014 granted to the company allows the FPls/Flls to invest upto 74% of the paid up capital of Bharti Airtel, the company said.
Bharti Telecom is the single-largest shareholder in Bharti Airtel with about 41% stake. Singtel owns 48% in Bharti Telecom, which gives it a 35% stake in Bharti Airtel.
Foreign investors such as Indian Continent Investment Ltd, Viridian Ltd as Pastel Ltd together own 21.46% stake in the company.
This would enable Bharti Airtel to raise more funds from foreign investors at a time when it faces a heated tariff war with Reliance Jio.
India’s telecom sector witnessed massive upheaval after the entry of Jio, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Ltd, in September 2016, with data prices plunging to rock bottom.
Following this, half-a-dozen companies either shut shop or were acquired by bigger players. The domestic telecom market is now largely a three-way tussle between Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea and Jio.