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Vodafone inks 2G intra-circle roaming deal with BSNL

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Vodafone India has signed a 2G intra-circle roaming (ICR) agreement with state owned telco BSNL to use each other’s network assets and expand 2G connectivity mutually across the country in all of their circles.

The agreement between both telcos will help Vodafone expand its 2G network especially in rural areas and strengthens BSNL’s network reach in urban areas, both telcos said in a statement. Vodafone India has over 137,000 towers across the country and BSNL over 114,000.

Other ICR deals from BSNL: Bharti Airtel was in talks with BSNL since August last year for a spectrum sharing deal and finalized a pan-India 2G ICR deal in April. In the same month, BSNL also inked a 2G Intra Circle Roaming deal with Aircel applicable across all circles; both companies were in talks since January. In March, Reliance Jio had signed an ICR deal with the BSNL, which was applicable across 22 circles.

YOU Broadband acquisition: Vodafone which reported 67.5 million data subscribers for Q2 FY16, had earlier acquired TRG Capital owned internet service provider YOU Broadband for and estimated Rs 350-400 crore in April. Both companies signed an agreement in March, while the deal was subjected for approval from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board.

Recent Vodafone developments

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-Last month, Idea Cellular had denied that it is in “exploratory talks” for a merger with rival Vodafone, in a notification with the stock exchange.
-In the same month, Vodafone rolled out instant Aadhaar based eKYC (Know Your Customer) verification.
-In April, Vodafone India was in talks with investment bankers to launch its initial public offering. The IPO is expected to raise anywhere around $2 billion and $2.5 billion.
-In March, Vodafone and the Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Limited (UPPCL), signed a partnership to allow consumers in the Uttar Pradesh (East) circle to pay their electricity bills through M-Pesa.
-In February, Vodafone had said that it would invest Rs 6,000 crore in Maharashtra for capacity augmentation and new business initiatives in the state.
-In the same month, the company completed the first phase of its planned 4G rollout under the 1800 MHz band with the launch of its 4G service in Mumbai.
-In December last year, DoT had given a green signal to Vodafone to merge four of its Indian entities (Vodafone East, Vodafone South, Vodafone Cellular and Vodafone Digilink) into Vodafone Mobile Services (VMS).
-In November 2015, Vodafone had announced that it would invest Rs 13,000 crore for network expansion, capacity augmentation, and to introduce new business initiatives in India.

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