Vodafone selects banks for $2.5 billion IPO in India

A staff member poses with a mock oversized Vodafone Secure SIM card at the Vodafone booth at the CeBit computer fair in Hanover, March, 5, 2012. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch/Files
Telecoms network operator Vodafone Group of UK, according to media reports, has selected Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofA), Kotak Investment Banking and UBS for managing the up to $2.5 billion IPO of its Indian telecom subsidiary.

Deutsche Bank, HSBC and ICICI Securities have won joint book-runner roles.

Vodafone, which has 194 million customers including over 100 million in rural areas in India, is likely to launch the IPO early next year.

The IPO is expected to mobilize between $2 billion-$2.5 billion, Reuters reported earlier. At the upper end, the IPO would make it India’s biggest stock market listing since state-owned Coal India raised $3.5 billion in 2010.

Vodafone said in November it had started preparations for floating its Indian subsidiary.

Vodafone is the second largest mobile operator in India behind Bharti Airtel. The company is one of the largest investors in India, the third-largest economy in Asia.

The telecom operator is expected to use the proceeds of the IPO to buy additional radio spectrum and expand its operations.

Vodafone entered India in 2007, when it acquired a majority stake in Hutchison Essar. Since 2014 Vodafone India has become the 100 percent subsidiary of Vodafone Group. It is not known what will be the impact of its ongoing discussions with the India government on the pending tax issue on the IPO.