Riding the India wave, Vodafone-Essar is taking a $2.04 billion (around Rs 10,000 crore) loan to fuel its expansion plans. They’ve appointed SBI Capital Markets to raise the funds in the next two months, Business Standard reports. SBI Capital Markets in turn has approached various public sector banks to raise money. The company will use it to continue its network expansions, and, reportedly, bid for 3G spectrum etc.
Vodafone’s focus on the Indian market has helped the company record strong earnings this quarter with APAC revenues rising by 27.9 percent to £ 1402 from the same quarter last year, and is critical to Vodafone’s global strategy.
The company’s chief executive officer Asim Ghosh is handing over his reigns to Marten Pieters, currently a director of Millicom International Cellular, a Luxembourg-based telecom provider, according to Mint.
Ghosh has led Vodafone Essar over a decade from when it was a single circle operator with a lakh subscribers to a pan-India operator with 60.9 million subscribers. He announced his retirement but will continue to be a non-executive member on the company’s board.
Invests In R&D
Vodafone has invested Rs 12 crore in research at a centre of excellence in telecommunication at IIT Kharagpur. The centre of excellence, set up jointly by the operator and G S Sanyal School of Telecommunications in IIT Kharagpur, will use the funds to begin a technology incubation centre, sponsor students’ travel and equipment and conduct research projects for Vodafone over the next five years.
In collaboration with the school, Vodafones global research and development team will research low energy consuming cellular systems and other technologies, reported Business Standard.