Idea shareholders give nod for merging mobile biz with Vodafone India

Photo: Reuters

Shareholders of Idea Cellular Ltd have approved the company’s proposed merger of its mobile business with Vodafone India, according to a regulatory filing.

Over 99% of Idea shareholders voted in favour of the merger at the shareholders’ meeting on 12 October, Idea said on Friday. Both the companies have approached the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) seeking its nod. In the next step, they need a final approval from the department of telecom.

The meeting of the Idea shareholders was convened after directions of the NCLT.

In March, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular announced the merger of their operations to create the country’s largest mobile phone operator worth more than $23 billion with a 35% market share, Mint reported.

The combined entity of Vodafone India and Idea Cellular, which are currently India’s number 2 and 3, respectively, would dislodge Bharti Airtel to counter the fierce price war in the world’s second-largest telecom market.

The deal gives Vodafone India an implied enterprise value of Rs82,800 crore and Idea Rs72,200 crore. Post completion of the deal, the British firm will own 45.1% stake in the merged entity while the Aditya Birla group, Idea’s parent, will have 26% after paying Rs3,874 crore cash for a 4.9% stake. The remaining 28.9% will be held by other shareholders.

At 3.13pm, shares of Idea were up 5.84% at Rs78.85 on BSE, while the Sensex rose 0.74% to 32,420.96.

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