SAHARA GROUP MARKS TELECOM ENTRY WITH STAKE IN S-TEL

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The Sahara group has picked up an 11.7% stake in Chennai-based telecom company S Tel, which  has unified access services licenses.The government parlance for telecom licenses that allow wireline as well as wireless services in a service area has also given   start-up spectrum for Sahara group in  Bihar, Orissa, Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, North East and Assam for Mobile Service.

According to a report submitted by the telecom regulator TRAI to the government. The regulator had prepared a report on the ownership of all companies that were given telecom licences last year following reports of stake sales by promote.

A Sahara executive, who did not wish to be named, confirmed that a group company by the name of Sahara India Investment Corp had picked up stake in S Tel.So far, private equity firms, Skycity Foundations and Telecom Investments (Mauritius), were believed to be holding the remaining 51% stake in the company. The S Tel website lists these two PE firms as “co-promoters”, but does not divulge any additional details on them.

STEL  also holds license  to provide broadband services across the country. Last year, S Tel attracted attention when it offered to pay Rs 13,752 crore to the government for a pan-India spectrum. Earlier in 2008, it was reported to have doubled the offer of revenue to the government for licences in all 22 circles for which it had applied for.

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