New Delhi, March 14, 2002: Bharti Telesonic (IndiaOne), the country’s first private national long distance operator and a fully owned subsidiary of Bharti Televentures, today secured the license for operating services in the International Long distance Telephony (ILD) sector. The Department of Telecommunications awarded the ILD license after Bharti Telesonic duly deposited a license fee of Rs. 25 crore along with a bank guarantee of Rs. 25 crore in accordance with the terms and conditions of the license agreement.
Bharti Telesonic will be launching the ILD services in April 2002 under the IndiaOne brand umbrella. IndiaOne, the company’s brand for long distance voice services, had endeared itself to consumers in the national long distance telephony sector in December 2001 by announcing deep discounts to consumers of long distance telephony. Today the long distance telephone charges have come down by 60%.
In preparation for its ILD services, IndiaOne has already installed, commissioned and tested two international gateways in Chennai and Mumbai. IndiaOne has also entered into bilateral agreements with a number of international carriers to put in place the network backbone for its international long distance services.
This marks yet another important milestone for Bharti Telesonic, making it the only integrated private player in long distance telephony. “This further underlines Bharti’s commitment to build Indian telecom infrastructure and provide the Indian consumer not only with a world-class choice but a high quality service experience”, said Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman and Group Managing Director, Bharti Enterprises.
About Bharti Tele-Ventures
Bharti Tele-Ventures, a company promoted by Bharti Telecom, is India’s leading private sector provider of telecommunications services based on an aggregate of approximately 1,457,430 customers including of Internet and National Long Distance as of January 31, 2002, consisting of approximately 1,184,544 cellular customers. Cellular services currently constitute the largest portion of its business in terms of total revenues. The company also provides fixed-line, VSAT, Internet and network solutions and has also commenced offering national long distance services by offering data transmission services and voice transmission services for cellular to cellular calls. The Company intends to offer voice transmission services for fixed-line subscribers shortly. Bharti Tele-Ventures intends to widen its range of telecommunications services to provide international bandwidth access and international voice services. The company seeks to capitalise on the growth opportunities that it believes are available in the Indian telecommunications market and consolidate its position to be an integrated telecommunications services provider in key markets in India, with a focus on providing cellular services.
Bharti Tele-Ventures is a holding company and its operations are segmented into four divisions, operated by wholly owned subsidiaries: Cellular - Bharti Cellular, Access - Bharti Telenet, Long Distance - Bharti Telesonic, Broadband Solutions -Bharti Broadband Networks.
Bharti Tele-Ventures presently offers cellular services in seven of the 22 circles in India and intends to provide cellular services in eight additional circles, for which the Company has entered into licenses with the DoT. As of Jan 31, 2002, approximately 93% of India’s total number of cellular subscribers resided in their existing and proposed cellular circles, according to COAI reports.
Bharti Tele-Ventures was the first private sector operator to provide fixed-line services in India. It currently provides fixed-line services in the Madhya Pradesh circle, and Haryana circle and intends to provide fixed-line services in three additional circles of Delhi, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, for which they have entered into licenses with DoT.
Bharti Tele-ventures has always believed in creating strong partnerships with its joint venture partners. Today SingTel and Warburg Pincus are it’s leading partners. The other partners include leading international financial investors such as International Finance Corporation, Asian Infrastructure Fund Group and New York Life Insurance.