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25 Years

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With a constant motivation to strengthen our innovative core, we have cemented Airtel’s position to lead change in a fast paced and everevolving digital landscape. Since our first mobile service launch in New Delhi on September 27, 1995, we have been at the forefront of the transformation of the wireless telecom sector in the last two and a half decades.


Our telecom journey begins with the launch of cellular service in New Delhi


Airtel introduces services in Himachal Pradesh


British Telecom (BT) – a major UK-based telecom operator acquires 21.05% equity stake in Bharti Airtel


Breaking the public sector monopoly, we become the first private sector company in India to introduce fixed line services in Indore


We acquired majority stake in JT Mobiles (a leading cellular service operator in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh) to emerge as the largest private sector operator and officially started operations in both the states, in the following year, under the brand aegis of Airtel


Airtel formed a strategic partnership with Singapore Telecommunications (Singtel) and the company later joined the Board with an investment of $400 million in Airtel – the single largest investment by an international investor in telecom sector at that time


We introduced India’s first private submarine cable company ‘Network i2i’ in partnership with Singtel as a 51:49 joint venture company. The 3,200 km submarine optical fiber cable network was set-up at a cost of $250 million, linking Chennai (India) and Tuas (Singapore) with a high bandwidth capacity of 8.4 terabits per second

Airtel expanded its presence to Kolkata with a 100% stake in Spice Cell, the then leading operator in Kolkata

Our cellular services was launched in Chennai after acquiring 89.5% equity stake in SkyCell Communications


We successfully closed India’s first 100% book building Initial Public Offer (IPO), raising ₹833.85 crore for 10% equity stake

We entered the markets of Punjab, Uttar Pradesh (west), Uttaranchal, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Kerala


Allowing customers access to Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS), we introduced General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) over our network


We entered into a path-breaking partnership with IBM to outsource hardware, software and IT services requirements


To build and maintain our mobile network across 16 circles in India, we signed network management agreements with Ericsson and Nokia

Commercially launched Enhanced Data Rate for Global Evolution (EDGE) services in Delhi for our customers, to experience rich multimedia content

Airtel was the first private mobile service operator to introduce its services in the erstwhile state of Jammu & Kashmir


We became a pan-India mobile service operator with the launch of our services in Assam


Formed an independent tower company, Bharti Infratel Limited, by hiving off passive infrastructure (telecom towers) assets


Introduced the state-ofthe-art Direct To Home (DTH) service for home entertainment


Rebranded ourselves with a completely new brand identity, presenting a unified face for our customers across the globe


We introduced the first 3G service in India, in the city of Bangalore, with more than 1 lakh customers registering within 72 hours of its launch


Launched the revolutionary 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) service in Kolkata with superfast mobile internet services


The first operator to launch 3G WiFi dongle

Launched Wynk Music – carrier agnostic mobile application with a curated library of 1.8 Mn songs


Bharti Airtel launch “Project Leap’ Airtel’s network transformation program

Airtel emerged as the 3rd largest mobile operator in the world with more than 303 million subscribers in Africa and India

4G services extended to 17 cities in India

Airtel applied for a Payments Bank license with Kotak to acquire 19.9% stake in Airtel M Commerce Services Limited

4G service was launched across India in 296 towns, enabling our customers to experience high speed wireless broadband and enjoy uninterrupted HD video streaming, superfast uploading and downloading of movies, music and images

Rolled out national mobile number portability service

Launched high speed 4G services commercially in 334 towns across India


Became the first mobile operator in India to commercially deploy LTEAdvanced (4G+) technology on a live 4G network in Kerala

Successfully concluded the acquisition rights to use 2 x 5 MHz spectrum in the 1800 MHz Band allotted to Videocon Telecom in 6 circles


Airtel Payments Bank became the first payments bank in the country to go LIVE as it rolled out services nationally

Acquired Telenor India (an enterprise of Telenor South Asia Investments Pte Limited)

Completed the acquisition of Tikona Digital Networks, making Tikona a wholly owned subsidiary of Airtel

Announced the deployment of Massive Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (MIMO), in partnership with Huawei Telecommunication India, as part of Airtel’s ongoing network transformation program


Launched an Industry first exclusive rewards program: #airtelThanks

Entered into a definitive agreement with Tata Teleservices Ltd. and Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) Ltd. for acquisition of their Consumer Mobile Businesses (CMB)

Launched One Airtel – firstof-its-kind digital quad-play platform in India, to simplify customer experience for homes that use multiple Airtel services


Successfully closed USD 3.6 Bn Rights Issue

Launched Airtel Xstream, a converged digital entertainment application for mobile users, along with India first Android based set-top box and OTT smart stick

In an industry first initiative, Airtel launched voice over Wi-Fi service that leverages innovative technology to enhance indoor voice calling experiences

Launched 1Gbps ‘Airtel Xstream Fiber’ with unlimited ultra-fast broadband

Wynk Music became #1 music streaming app in India in terms of Daily Active Users based on App Annie Data


Airtel became first operator to launch 4G in 26 villages located in tough terrains of upper Ladakh

Successfully closed $2bn QIP and $1bn FCCB, the largest dual tranche Equity and FCCB offering ever in Asia-Pacific, the largest QIP by a private sector issuer in India and the largest FCCB offering from an India issuer in the last 12 years