Telenor finds a new partner ahead of 2G auction

Last Updated: Fri, Oct 26, 2012 13:40 hrs

New Delhi, Oct 26 (IANS) Norway's Telenor Group Friday said its Indian subsidiary, Telewings Communications, has entered into a partnership with Lakshdeep Investments and Finance.

"Lakshdeep will contribute an agreed amount of equity into Telewings," Telenor said in a statement.

Lakshdeep Investments and Finance is controlled by Sudhir Valia, brother-in-law of Sun Pharma promoter Dilip Sanghvi.

"This is a financial investment by Valia in his personal capacity," said Telenor.

Lakshdeep thus replaces Unitech as Telenor's Indian partner so that the company can bid jointly for new mobile telephone licenses next month.

In February, the Supreme Court cancelled joint venture Uninor's licenses granted in the 2008 licensing round under the then communications minister A. Raja.

Earlier this month, Telenor ended its joint venture with Unitech after the realtor agreed to transfer its business in Uninor to a new entity controlled by the former.

Telenor Group will own 74 percent in the new joint venture.

"Telenor Group will maintain operational control and upon necessary approvals all assets of Unitech Wireless (Uninor) will be transferred to this company for seamless continuity of operations," said the statement.

Telewings has already applied for prequalification to participate in the upcoming spectrum auction.

However, a final decision on "whether to participate or not will be made before the auction starts," said Telenor.

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