To complete the sale of its mobile-phone services business to Bharti Airtel Ltd, the Tata group has paid about $7.3 billion (around Rs 50,000 crore) to the lenders and the government, a Bloomberg report said.
Tata Sons Pvt., the group holding company, paid Rs 10,000 crore to the Department of Telecommunications late last month, days after settling all pending loans worth Rs 40,000 crore owed by unit Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) Ltd., Bloomberg reported citing the Mumbai-based group's emailed statement.
The deal that was announced almost two years ago, at a time when there was an industry consolidation in the telecom industry was triggered by the entry of Reliance Jio Infocomm. The Mukesh Ambani-led business' dirt cheap call and data offers at the start of its business caused its competitors to exit or merge businesses as debts piled on.
Tata Teleservices Ltd and Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) were agreed to be merged with Bharti Airtel in 2017.
At present, India has only three privately run mobile network providers, namely, Reliance Jio, Bharati Airtel and Vodafone Idea Ltd. Vodafone Idea was a result of merger between Vodafone Group Plc's Indian Unit and Kumar Mangalam Birla's Idea Cellular Ltd.