Tata Teleservices to invest $2 bn for GSM rollout (Second Lead)

June 10th, 2009 - 7:08 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 10 (IANS) Leading telecom operator Tata Teleservices Wednesday launched mobile services on the GSM platform under the Tata DoCoMo brand, saying it will invest $2 billion (Rs.9,450 crore) for its pan-India rollout.
The company, in which Japan’s NTT DoCoMo has 26 percent stake, has received GSM spectrum for 18 out of the country’s 22 telecom circles.

“Only Assam, the northeast, West Bengal and Delhi are the circles where we are still awaiting spectrum,” Deepak Gulati, president of Tata’s GSM business, told reporters here at the launch.

He said the company had requested the government for an early allotment of spectrum in the Delhi circle.

Operations will be commercially launched in south India by this month-end.

By the year-end, Tata will expand services on the GSM platform across the country.

“We will bring to India the various products and services that we offer in Japan,” said Toshinari Kunieda, NTT DoCoMo’s global business division senior vice-president and managing director.

Asked if the Japanese firm will increase stake in Tata, Kunieda said: “We have no plans or intentions at this point of time to up our stake in the company.”

Tata Teleservices entered into an agreement with NTT DoCoMo in November 2008, under which the Japanese company acquired the 26 percent stake for $2.7 billion.

“The Indian market and our subscribers will soon get to experience the benefits of differentiated products and services that our association with DoCoMo will enable us to offer,” Tata Teleservices managing director Anil Sardana had said in a statement in March.

Tata Teleservices expects to leverage DoCoMo’s expertise in the development and delivery of value-added services, where the Japanese firm is an established player.

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