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News Digest:Warid,3G Auction, Hinduja Group, BSNL, INOX & More

Warid Telecom Plans To Partner Essar And Bharti For Licenses

Warid Telecom has plans  to partner Essar and Bharti Airtel to bid for licenses in different countries in Asia. There is also a possibility of Warid participating in the WiMax spectrum auction in India. Wonder if Airtel will want to partner with a company that’s already involved with a competitor – Essar. (Read more at The Economic Times)

3G Auction To Be Complete By March 2010

Sam Pitroda, adviser to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, has announced that the much delayed 3G auction would be complete by 31st March, 2010. The auction was expected to bring in revenues worth Rs 250 billion when it was expected that there would be four slots of spectrum for sale. (Read more at Bloomberg.com)

MIPS To Integrate Yahoo! Widget In Digital TV

MIPS Technologies has announced that it will develop an optimized reference platform running the Yahoo! Widget Engine for digital TV and set-top box applications. This will allow MIPS licensees to develop devices incorporating Yahoo! TV Widgets which will enable internet services and online media to reach viewers through applications specifically tailored to the needs of the television audience. (Read more at CNNmoney.com)

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Hinduja Group Re-Enters Film Business

Hinduja Group has re-entered the Indian Film business with an investment of Rs 5 billion. The group has roped in former Reliance Big Pictures COO Sunir Kheterpal as CEO for IN Entertainment Co. (Read more at Variety)

DoT Not To Allow Mergers Between 3G Auction Winners

DoT could most likely not allow mergers between operators who win the 3G auction to ensure optimum competition. There could be 2 to 4 operators in any circle depending on the spectrum available for auction. (Read more at The Business Line)

BSNL Seeks Rs 8600 Bailout From Government;Tender For Optic Fiber Network; Satcom Network For Indian Air Force

BSNL has asked the government for a Rs 8600 crore bailout for the next two years and an extension of moratorium on interest payment of government loans worth Rs 7,000 crore. The PSU has also asked the Prime Minister’s Office to direct all central and state governments to subscribe to its services. (Read more at Indian Express)

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BSNL has also floated a tender for building the optic fiber network for the Defence. The Defence is vacating the 3G spectrum in lieu of the optic fiber network.  (Read more at Business Standard)

ORG Informatics has said that it has bagged an order worth Rs 14.05 crore from state-run Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) for commissioning Satcom Network for the Indian Air Force (IAF). (Read more at Business Line)

PVR – DT Cinema Deal Not Complete Yet

PVR has not issued shares on preferential basis to DLF as part of PVR’s Rs 60 crore acquisition of DLF owned DT Cinemas. PVR has said that the allotment has been deferred due to certain certain pending issues regarding handover of properties to the company. (Read more at The Economic Times)

TRAI Issues Consultation Paper On Foreign Investment

TRAI has issued a consultation paper regarding foreign investment in the broadcasting sector.  In the paper TRAI has recommended the following  increase in foreign investment (FDI + FII).

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  • FM Radio: Increase from 20 percent to 49 percent.
  • Cable Network: Increase from 49 percent to 74 percent.
  • DTH: Increase from 49 percent to 74 percent  (FDI not more than  20 percent).
  • Uplinking Hubs/Teleports: Increase from 49 percent to 74 percent .
  • News & Current Affairs TV Broadcaster: Increase from 26 percent to  49 percent.
  • Non News TV Broadcaster: No Change

INOX Looks To Acquire 51 Percent In Fame

Theatre chain INOX Leisure is close to acquiring 44 percent stake in Fame Cinemas, formerly known as Shringar Cinemas Ltd. Fame has 93 screens in 12 cities and is present in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Haryana, West Bengal, Jharkhand and Karnataka. INOX might also pick up additional stake in the market for a 51 percent stake in the company. If the acquisition does happen then INOX will have a presence of 204 screens. (Read more at Business Standard)

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