Vodafone Idea unveils new built-in model id ‘Vi’

New Delhi, September 7

Vodafone Idea Ltd on Monday unveiled a brand new model id, because the struggling telco appeared to rediscover itself submit the apex court docket’s ruling on previous statutory dues.

VIL, which had about 280 million subscribers as of June, stated that Vodafone and Idea manufacturers will now be referred to as ‘Vi’.

“A brand with its eyes set on the future, it is built for and around customers… The integration of two brands is a culmination of the largest telecom integration in the world,” VIL stated in a press release speaking its new unified shopper model id and positioning by way of a digital launch on Monday.

Elaborating on the brand new model, Ravinder Takkar, MD and CEO, Vodafone Idea stated, “Vodafone Idea came together as a merged entity two years ago. We have, since then focussed on integrating two large networks, our people and processes.” The model integration not solely marks the completion of the biggest telecom merger on the planet however may also set the corporate on its future journey to supply sturdy digital experiences to 1 billion Indians on its 4G community, he stated.

“VIL is now leaner and agile, and the deployment of many ideas of 5G structure has helped us rework right into a future-fit, digital community for the altering buyer wants.

“The new brand launch signifies our desire to not just deliver, but delight our customers, stakeholders, communities and our employees and signals our passion and commitment to be a Champion for Digital India,” Takkar added.

The announcement comes shut on heels of Vodafone Idea board, final week, approving fund-raising plans of as much as Rs 25,000 crore by way of a mixture of fairness and debt devices, to maintain the corporate afloat.

The upcoming fundraising will supply a lifeline to cash-strapped VIL, which has suffered large losses, has been shedding subscribers and Average Revenue Per User (ARPU), and faces excellent Adjusted Gross income (AGR) dues of about Rs 50,000 crore.

In the latest previous there have been stories suggesting that Verizon and Amazon could make investments over USD four billion into the corporate, though Vodafone Idea itself clarified final week that whereas it continually evaluates numerous alternatives as a part of company technique, there is no such thing as a such proposal presently earlier than the Board.

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court directed telecom operators to pay 10 per cent of whole AGR-related dues this yr, and remainder of the funds in 10 instalments ranging from subsequent fiscal yr.

Fund infusion is essential for cash-strapped VIL, the third-largest operator within the fiercely-competitive Indian telecom market the place Jio’s entry in 2016, with free calls and low cost knowledge, pushed some rivals to exit, purchase, or merge to remain afloat.

Jio Platforms — the unit that homes India’s youngest however largest telecom agency Jio and apps — not too long ago secured Rs 1,52,056 crore from 13 buyers together with Facebook, Google, General Atlantic, Intel Capital and Qualcomm Ventures.

Notably, Vodafone Idea’s total AGR dues stood at over Rs 58,000 crore, of which the corporate has paid Rs 7,854 crore to the Department of Telecom thus far.

The statutory dues arose after the Supreme Court, in October final yr, upheld the federal government’s place on together with income from non-core companies in calculating the annual AGR of telecom firms, a share of which is paid as licence and spectrum price to the exchequer.

VIL has been underneath extreme monetary strain, and analysts had earlier cautioned that the corporate’s longer-term viability was underneath a cloud.

In December, Vodafone Idea Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla had stated VIL could must shut if there is no such thing as a aid on statutory dues.

The firm had reported a staggering Rs 73,878 crore of web loss for fiscal ended March 2020 – the very best ever by any Indian agency – after it provisioned for Supreme Court mandated statutory dues.

It reported a web loss to Rs 25,460 crore for the June quarter after making further provisions to pay previous statutory dues, and had, at that time, stated its potential to proceed as going concern hinges on the Supreme Court permitting extra time to pay dues.

The apex court docket has rejected the demand for a 20-year time for telcos to clear a mixed Rs 1.6 lakh crore in previous dues however allowed the legal responsibility to be cleared in 10 years.

Besides fee of AGR dues, VIL’s fund-raising shall be necessary on condition that 5G is on the horizon, and trade would require the firepower for making substantial investments into bidding for spectrum and community rollout. –PTI

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