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Airtel to set up basic ADR programme to woo US investors

By Religare

Looking to tap investors in the US, telecom major Bharti Airtel said it plans to go for a basic ADR listing in America although there are no immediate plans to raise funds, reported PTI.

"The company has decided to establish a sponsored Level 1 ADR programme in United States. The ADRs can be traded on the US OTC...This program is not for purpose raising capital in the US market," a Bharti Airtel spokesperson said.


"There will be no new issuance of shares and there will no dilution of share value," the spokesperson said.

According to the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Level 1 ADR programmes establish a trading presence but may not be used to raise capital.

It is the only type of facility that may be unsponsored and may be traded only on the over-the-counter market. The programme is an easy way to gauge investors' interest.

The company spokesperson said that the establishment and launch of the ADR programme is subject to all the regulatory approvals and clarifications from SEBI and RBI.

JPMorgan depository Receipts business acting JPMorgan Chase Bank has been appointed as the depository.

"The purpose is to develop new investors and thus expand investors bay by launching investors service in the US," the spokesperson said.

Under the programme, the US-based investors will be able to invest in Bharti Airtel through open market transactions and it will also help the company raise funds in future.

Boosted by sales of mobile tower in Africa and 30 per cent increase in average data revenue per customers, Airtel yesterday reported 40 per cent jump in its consolidated net profit of Rs 1,554.3 crore for the first quarter of 2015-16.

Its net debt however rose to Rs 68,134.5 crore and finance cost doubled to Rs 1,927.6 crore during the first quarter from the year-ago period.

The company saw a dip of 11 per cent in average spent per user in the voice segment to Rs 148 from Rs 166 in India. This was however offset by 30 per cent in average data revenue per customer to Rs 181 from Rs 139 on y-o-y basis.

The company spokesperson attributed drop in voice revenue to implementation of new mobile interconnection charges in India by the regulator TRAI.

Story first published: Thursday, August 6, 2015, 9:30 [IST]
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