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SingTel Joins NLD-ILD Fray; To Focus on Enterprise Services First: Dagar

SingTel is the newest entrant in India’s ente200px-singtelsvgrprise telecom segment. It has obtained NLD and ILD licences through a joint venture with a Leela group company and Bharti Enterprises, according to ToI. The Singapore based telco will hold 74% FDI in the new entity.

SingTel Global India will focus on provisioning enterprise services to MNCs and corporates and later move on to voice, its MD Arun Dagar has said. The licenses will enable virtual private network-based (VPN) services using MPLS to be offered to corporates in the country.

SingTel treads the same path that two largest operators in USA – AT&T and Verizon, and three European behemoths – British Telecom, Cable and Wireless and France Telecom Orange, took into India via long distance licenses. The five operators recently established the Association of Competitive Telecom Operators (ACTO). ACTO has been formed to lobbying with the government on deregulation of ILD license.  The industry body is pushing for removal of double taxation on data services and a wholesale pricing regime for international connectivity, Telecom Asia reports.

Joint Ventures

When AT&T entered India in 2006, it tied up with the Mahindra Group to launch NLD and ILD, while France Telecom‘s Orange Business Services entered in 2008 by floating a 74:26 joint venture with Emery Technologies (promoted by Moser Baer’s MD, Mr Deepak Puri) called Equant Network Services India. British Telecom established its Indian operations in 2007 hand in hand with Jubilant Enpro while C&W obtained the licenses in September 2008 with the help of TTK Group. SingTel holds around 31% stake in Bharti Group, which also offers long distance and enterprise services, which could give the late entrant a much needed jumpstart in the domestic market. Will we see the two companies consolidating  enterprise services into a joint venture?

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