Voda­fone, Idea may Call for Eas­ing Spec­trum Caps

Cos likely to ar­gue that con­sol­i­da­tion will cut no. of play­ers, make cur­rent caps ir­rel­e­vant Mas­sive Job Cuts Likely in Tele­com Core Is­sues not Ad­dressed: Bala

The Economic Times - - Sports: The Great Games -

Air­lines have seen as much as a 35% de­cline in av­er­age do­mes­tic fares in the three months through Jan­uary, as de­mon­eti­sa­tion took away their pric­ing power at a time when they were also adding ca­pac­ity, re­ports Em­ploy­ees of state-run banks may stand el­i­gi­ble for stock op­tions from next fis­cal year, as the gov­ern­ment is ac­tively con­sid­er­ing the sug­ges­tion made by the Banks Board Bureau to bet­ter in-

cen­tivise staff. For large banks, the em­ployee stock op­tion plan (Esop) could be as much as 5% of profit af­ter tax. For smaller banks, it could be about 3%, a se­nior gov­ern­ment of­fi­cial said. Econ­omy: Macro, Mi­cro & More The Supreme Court on Tuesday up­held AIADMK chief VK Sasikala’s con­vic­tion in a dis­pro­por­tion­ate as­sets case and sent her back to jail. Hours later, Sasikala loy­al­ist Edap­padi K Palaniswami was elected the leg­is­la­ture party leader, pro­ject­ing him as the next chief min­is­ter, while O Pan­neer­sel­vam was sacked from the party. Pure Pol­i­tics New Delhi: Voda­fone In­dia and Idea Cel­lu­lar, in talks for a pos­si­ble merger, are likely to ask t he Depa r t ment of Telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions for a re­lax­ation in the amount of spec­trum tel­cos can hold, cit­ing the on­go­ing con­sol­i­da­tion wave that would re­duce the num­ber of play­ers and ren­der ex­ist­ing lim­its ir­rel­e­vant.

If In­dia’s sec­ond and third­large s t tel­cos do ac­tu­ally de­cide to merge, the re­sul­tant en­tity would need to sur - ren­der a sig­nif­i­cant amount of spec­trum un­der the cur­rent r ules. A tele­com operator can only hold a max­i­mum 25% of the to­tal spec­trum al­lot­ted/is­sued in a cir­cle and up to 50% of the air­waves al­lot­ted in any one band­width. T h a t wo u l d mean breach­ing the cap in four cir­cles for the cov­eted 900 MHz band and in 12 cir­cles for the 2500 MHz band, ac­cord­ing to a Credit Suisse re­port.

“Both the com­pa­nies are first try­ing to fig­ure out how they can com­bi­netheirair­wavesacrossall bands to get con­tigu­ous chunks of air­waves and for the balance air­waves, which ex­ceed the caps, they could soon make a pre­sen­ta­tion tothe depart­ment ex­plain­ing that cur­rent mar­ket con­di­tions re­quire rais­ing of caps on the quan­tum of air­waves that can be held,” said a per­son fa­mil­iar with the de­vel­op­ment. “Chang ing mar­ket Ex­perts and tele­com ex­ec­u­tives say the wave of con­sol­i­da­tion in the sec­tor may lead to mas­sive job cuts across lev­els, re­port Dev­ina Sen­gupta, Sreer­adha D Basu and Deepali Gupta. Ex­ec­u­tives say a third of the 3 lakh peo­ple em­ployed di­rectly and in­di­rectly could be­come re­dun­dant in 18 months. con­di­tions” are the rea­son for seek­ing a re­lax­ation in the cap, said the per­son cited ear­lier. Idea and the lo­cal unit of UK’s Voda­fone Group Plc are likely to pro­pose rais­ing the 25% cap by about 10 per­cent­age points, he said.

where he re­lated news of his con­ver­sa­tion with the founders o n S u n d ay a i med at en­sur­ing dis­putes did not spill over into the me­dia. T here wou ld likely be far fewer pub­lic bat­tles now, he told the in­vestors. “I spoke to the founders day be­fore yes­ter­day and we agreed that we should not have these dis­cus­sions through the me­dia. It does not re­flect well on the in­sti­tu­tion. We have a re­newed com­mit­ment not to let this spill into the pub­lic space,” Se­shasayee For­mer In­fosys CFO V Balakr­ish­nan told that Mon­day’s press con­fer­ence by In­fosys brass was ‘very dis­ap­point­ing’ as it did not ad­dress the core is­sues. He also said there is a trust deficit be­tween the board and the top share­hold­ers. said on t he c a l l which took place on Tuesday evening. The fou nde r s would con - tinue to give their views to the com­pany, he added. Se­shasayee also listed out steps such as in­sti­tu­tion­al­is­ing a sev­er­ance prac­tice to pre­vent such is­sues from aris­ing in the fu­ture. In an in­ter­view with ET last week, In­fosys co­founder NR Narayana Murthy said cor­po­rate gover­nance stan­dards at the com­pany had dropped and that an out­sized sev­er­ance pay­ment to some em­ploy­ees could look like ‘hush money’. Se­shasayee said the board would also look at the vari­able pay that would be paid to CEO Vishal Sikka this year. An­a­lysts had asked if there was enough f lex­i­bil­ity in how the pay­ment would be made even if cer­tain met­rics had not been met due to a tougher macroe­co­nomic en­vi­ron­ment.

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