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Ambani brothers sign India telecoms deal

Jun 07 2013 19:31

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Mumbai - India's billionaire Ambani brothers announced a $2.1bn deal on Friday to share telecom tower infrastructure, cementing a reconciliation between the once-warring siblings.

The agreement is another tangible sign that the two are patching up relations since their bitter fight for control of Reliance erupted after their rags-to-riches father, Dhirubhai, died without leaving a will in 2002.

Reliance Jio Infocomm, the telecom unit of Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries, signed the agreement with Reliance Communications, the flagship firm of the Anil Ambani group, to share the latter's telecom tower equipment, a joint statement said.

The move will help Reliance Industries to accelerate the roll-out of its long-awaited high-speed fourth generation (4G) telecom services, the companies said.

The aggregate value of the deal is more than $2.1bn for the duration of the agreement, which was not specified, the statement added.

"Under the terms of the agreement, Reliance Jio Infocomm will utilise up to 45 000 ground- and rooftop-based towers across RCom's nationwide network for accelerated roll-out of its state-of-the-art 4G services," the firms said.

Two firms signed a $220m deal in April to share their fibre-optic communications networks.

The latest agreement also allows the two companies to jointly build more towers at new locations, they said.

Reliance rose 0.55% while RCom was down 1.1% at 116.75 rupees, after a sharp recent rally on Friday.

india  |  telecommunications
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