Etisalat in talks over India expansion

UAE telecom held meeting with India's Spice Communications about investing in country.

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By  James Cordahi Published  April 2, 2008

UAE telecom Etisalat said on Wednesday it held meetings with India's Spice Communications and others about possibly making investments to enter the Indian telecom market.

Shares of Spice, which plans to list its mobile phone unit this year after a $100 million initial public offering (IPO), have surged almost 30% during the last three trading days. They ended up 10.24% on Wednesday.

"India is a very attractive market for Etisalat and we are studying different market entry strategies to determine the most appropriate fit," Etisalat Chairman Mohammad Omran said in a statement.

"We have also entered into direct meetings with various entities, amongst them Spice Communications," Omran said, though no agreements have been made.

The second-largest Arab telecom company by market value is also looking at bidding for an Indian telecom licence, he said.

State-controlled and privately held Gulf Arab telecom companies, like Etisalat, Kuwait's Zain and Qatar-based Qtel, have stepped up foreign acquisitions in the last three years, buoyed by rising earnings in the world's biggest oil exporting region.

Etisalat operates in 16 countries including Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. In March, it started a company in India to develop software products and mobile phone applications. (Reuters)

4032 days ago

On reading Mohammed Raza's comments, I experience complete deja vu, because I experienced the very same with Du. The level of service is appalling and talking to call centre agents is like trying to converse with a recorded message. Such appalling standards cannot succeed in India, where the service market is booming and competition is fierce. Maybe both Etisalat and Du should have a taste of the REAL world.

4033 days ago
Richard M.Wason

Dear Etisalat, We welcome you to India and taste the competition. With a bigger customer base we hope you will imporve the serivce and reduce the call rate to India(which is one of the highest in the world).

4033 days ago
swamy reddy

Etisalat Internet service so outdated and so expensive compare to any developed countries like Europe and India. Internet service availabe in In on USB any where any time brodband Internet. UAE no competition no proper service like any other country. Service should be competitive. Regards Swamy Reddy

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