STel Ltd is planning to roll out its mobile phone services in India in the fourth quarter of this year, the chief executive of Bahrain Telecommunications Co. (Batelco) said.
Batelco is a shareholder of STel. Batelco, listed on the Bahrain Stock Exchange, provides telecommunications services in Bahrain and also has joint venture companies in Jordan, Kuwait, Yemen, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.
In January Batelco will buy a 49% stake for up to $225 million along with other investors in STel, which received licenses in January 2008 to provide mobile phone services in six of India’s 22 telecom service areas. STel has licenses to provide mobile phone services in the eastern states of Bihar and Orissa, the northern states of Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh, India’s northeastern region and the state of Assam.
STel is in final negotiations to outsource its network and technology requirements and is also in talks with various tower companies to share infrastructure. [source]