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Breaking News : RCom-Sistema-Aircel combined entity to be India's No 2 carrier by users: ICRA
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KOLKATA: A potential three-way merger between Reliance Communications, Sistema Shyam Teleservices and Aircel will make the combined entity the second-largest in terms of subscriber base and fourth-largest in terms of revenue, said ICRA in a note.
The deal will also help RCom, the country's fourth-largest mobile carrier, expand its GSM services in West Bengal, Bihar and Assam, where it could not win back its 900 Mhz airwaves in the March 2015 auction," it added.
At present, RCom and Aircel are in merger talks, and they have reportedly agreed that the Anil Ambani-owned mobile carrier will combine its wireless business with Maxis-owned Aircel, in which both parent companies will own 50%. RCom is also in the process of acquiring Sistema Shyam's mobile operations.
ICRA said data services had remained a major thrust area for telecom companies as the number of data subscribers and the average data usage per subscriber per month is growing rapidly, which it feels has triggered a string of spectrum trading deals in recent weeks, including back-to-back 4G spectrum acquisitions by Bharti Airtel from Videocon Telecom and Aircel.
According to Sabyasachi Majumdar, Sr. VP, Co-head Corporate Sector Ratings, ICRA Ltd, "spectrum trading / sharing and business mergers allow the spectrum holding of the telcos to get better aligned to its utilisation, thereby leading to greater efficiency."
Spectrum trading, he said, "also allows smaller telecom companies to monetize their underutilised spectrum holdings, while it provides opportunity to larger telecom companies to amass spectrum outside the auctions".

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RCom-Sistema-Aircel combined entity to be India's No 2 carrier by users: ICRA - The Economic Times
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