Vodafone Idea May Get $4 Billion Investment From Amazon, Verizon: Report

US wireless carrier Verizon and Amazon may invest more than $4 billion (roughly Rs. 29,354 crores) for a stake in India’s Vodafone Idea, the Mint newspaper reported on Thursday, sending shares in the struggling Indian telecom firm up 10 percent.

Vodafone Idea’s stake-sale talks had been paused pending the outcome of a court hearing in India, which created uncertainty and could have threatened Vodafone Idea’s survival, Mint reported, citing two unnamed people aware of the negotiations.

But Amazon and Verizon are set to resume discussions following a Supreme Court ruling on Tuesday which gave mobile carriers 10 years to settle government dues.

Vodafone Idea did not immediately respond to Reuters request for comment. Amazon and Verizon did not return emails seeking comment outside regular US business hours.

Heavily indebted Vodafone Idea, a joint venture between Britain’s Vodafone and India’s Idea, had previously said its ability to continue as a going concern rested on a positive outcome of the hearing.

It has paid the Indian government Rs. 7,854 crores in telecoms dues, according to regulatory filings, but still owes roughly Rs. 50,000 crores more.

Shares in Vodafone Idea, which ended 13 percent lower after Tuesday’s court ruling, were up eight percent at Rs. 10.70 on the NSE index by 04:05 GMT.

© Thomson Reuters 2020


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