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Mobile TV Co Devas Multimedia To Sell 17 Pc Stake For $75 Million To Deutsche Telekom

On the 29th of July, the Indian government gave the go-ahead for the infusion of “fresh foreign equity” of Rs. 317.85 crore ($75.55 Million) in Bangalore based Devas Multimedia Ltd. Now ET reports that the investment is from European telecom major Deutsche Telekom (T-Mobile) for a 17 percent stake in Devas, valuing the company at around $443 million.

Mobile TV: Devas is working on Mobile TV – DMB for transmitting video content and television to multimedia devices via both satellite and terrestrial networks. As per this report, Devas’ service was/is expected to launch this year, but we could find little else on Devas.

It’s more likely that Devas will use satellite transmission over terrestrial for commercial services – a hybrid network appears unlikely, unless Devas ties up with Indian broadcaster Prasar Bharti. Note that only government organizations are allowed to use terrestrial networks for television transmission in India, though there has been talk of allowing sharing of instrastructure.

At present, only DVB-H has been trialled in India – between Nokia and public broadcaster DoorDarshan, though I have seen S-DMB being showcased at an exhibition in Delhi by Samsung.

Funding status: VC funds Columbia Capital and Telecom Ventures hold over 49 percent in Devas, and T-Mobile which will have 17 percent, will have the option of increasing their stake to 26 percent. Note that there’s a cap of 74 percent FDI in telecom.

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