Ravinder Takkar, CEO of Vodafone Idea (Vi), expressed how surprised he was to see Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman of Bharti Enterprises, commenting on the cultural differences inside Vi. For the unaware, very recently, Mittal had said that Vi is struggling because of the cultural differences that exist inside the company.
While talking to ET Telecom, Takkar said that Mittal had said many times that his company (Airtel) was on the brink of collapse, and if that company could emerge out stronger from the tough times, why does Mittal think that Vi can’t?
Adding to this, Takkar said Vi management hasn’t even said that they are at the brink of collapse, so it is hard to understand the basis of Mittal’s comments.
Sunil Bharti Mittal’s Words Make Vi an Underdog
Talking further to the publication, this time, Takkar addressed the ‘two and a half player Indian market’, now a common phrase that Mittal has been using for some time now to refer to the position of Vi.
Takkar said that being referred to as a half player makes Vi an underdog, and the company prefers to be in that position and fight from that side.
There were also talks about fundraising. Takkar said that for successful fundraising, one step that is left to be addressed is the equity conversion for the government. It would be hard for any investor to put money on the table without first knowing what share the government holds in the company, added Vi CEO.
The telco is very close to raising Rs 20,000 crore from external investors, and it is only the share conversion process for the government that is left for things to work out.
Vi needs to get the investment from outside parties as fast as possible so that it can participate in the spectrum auctions comfortably as well as increase capex to match its rivals Airtel and Jio.