Idea Cellular, Videocon cancel spectrum trading agreement

telecom tower in India rural area
Telecom network operators Idea Cellular and Videocon Telecommunications decided to terminate their spectrum trading agreement.

The spectrum trading agreement, announced in November 2015, was to Transfer of Right to Use 1800 MHz Spectrum in two telecom service areas of Gujarat and U.P. (West) for a consideration of Rs 3,310 crore.

Idea Cellular did not share specific reason for cancelling the much publicized spectrum trading deal with Videocon.

There will be no cost implication to Idea Cellular on termination of the spectrum trading agreement. For Videocon, the spectrum trading was a lifeline to boost the revenue. Videocon, a regional telecom operator, has been looking for launching 4G services. Videocon Group also did not get a buyer to buy its telecom business.

Recently, BSNL said it has started talks with Bharti Airtel for spectrum sharing and trading.

Despite the decision to drop its spectrum trading plan, Idea Cellular has expanded its 4G coverage significantly in India becoming the number two telecom operator in the 4G space.

Idea Cellular’s 4G LTE coverage is available in over 350 cities and state capitals in 10 telecom circles. Bharti Airtel is the only telecom operator in India with 4G coverage in more than 400 towns.

Idea owns 3G and/or 4G spectrum in 17 service areas representing 87 percent of its revenue (4G coverage 61 percent of revenue).

The Aditya Birla group company now offers high speed mobile broadband services — 3G and 4G — in around 4,500 towns and 60,000 villages. The company aims to launch 4G LTE services in 750 key towns across 10 telecom circles latest by end of June 2016.

Vina Krishnan
[email protected]