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telecom | IST

Bharti Infra-Indus Towers merger may get one more extension, says expert

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As news reports suggest that the merger and Bharti Infratel and Indus Towers is unlikely to receive approval from the Department of Telecommunications, an expert believes the companies may get an extension on the deadline.

As news reports suggest that the merger and Bharti Infratel and Indus Towers is unlikely to receive approval from the Department of Telecommunications, an expert believes the companies may get an extension on the deadline.
There are two possibilities here; another extension or forming a committee to look for other possible plans, said Rajiv Sharma, head of research at SBICAP Securities.
"The company goes to Plan-B if it sees that this merger may not get the approval for another 3-6 months,” said Sharma. No plan can be better than the merger as it gives a clean structure to any potential investor looking at a tower company with clear shareholdings, he added.
“Otherwise, the whole structure of Indus-Infratel is a layered structure, layered shareholdings. So extension is the most likely thing,” he said.
“Apart from this the company faces longer-term fundamental questions around how the market structure of the telecom market will be given the uncertainty around Vodafone-Idea – that’s another concern with the investors. Last time when the news came around merge delay the stock had seen a good amount of correction as well,” he further added.
On the stock front, Sharma said, “We have a 'sell' on Bharti, with a target price of Rs 230. We have issues with the visibility around tenancy growth and the whole market structure of the Indian telecom space, uncertainty around Vodafone-Idea pertaining to adjusted gross revenue (AGR) news."