GSM industry body, Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) has written a letter to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman Rahul Khullar to review merger and acquisition guidelines which were (M&A), notified early this year.
“To facilitate consolidation in the sector, it is important that the M&A guidelines be reviewed and modified to promote orderly growth of the sector,” COAI Director General Rajan S Mathews said in a letter to TRAI Chairman Rahul Khullar.
“We request authority to initiate a suo moto consultation on M&A policy so as to enable a comprehensive review of the guidelines with participation of all the stakeholders,” Mathews said in a letter.
On September 23, TRAI Chairman had said that the industry is bleeding. There are 12 operators here. Globally, each country has three to four telecom service providers. In some countries it is just two. Despite the modifications, no consolidation has happened yet.
He also referred to how the intense competition has led to smaller operators running up thousands of crores of debt, a deterrent for any potential suitors.