The dynamic Indian telecommunications market has one particularly compelling feature – the large number of significant operators. As the market constantly adjusts to the changing pressures and demands, takeovers and mergers ensure that some level of equilibrium is maintained. In the meantime, we have seen significant shifts in market share among the players. Of course it is the country’s booming mobile segment in which the major battles are being fought. Three major private players – Bharti, Reliance and Vodafone - with a formidable 54% share of the market between them, lead a large field of mobile operators. State-owned enterprises –BSNL and MTNL – have also been making their presence felt with a combined market share of 12%. (It should be noted though that BSNL and MTNL have major financial issues to address.) Although the fixed-line telephony market in India has seen little growth of late (and is in fact shrinking), it remains an important segment of the overall market; the two state-owned operators deliver the overwhelming majority of fixed-line services. This report provides details of the many players in India’s telecommunications market. The information offered includes comprehensive set of statistics covering the key areas in which the various telcos operate.
- despite strong competition, the leading mobile operators have managed to hold market share and rankings;
- in the aftermath of the 2G scandal a number of operators exited the market;
- licence cancellations and other issues in 2012/2013 effectively reduced India’s 15-strong mobile sector to around seven main players;
- further rationalisation of the market is anticipated;
- the regulators held a successful re-auction of 2G spectrum in early 2014, after two unsuccessful attempts;
- a large drop in mobile subscribers occurred in the second half of 2012, as operators removed inactive subscribers from their databases;
- the government agreed to conciliation talks with Vodafone in their ongoing tax dispute;
- however, by early 2014 Vodafone was moving to seek international arbitration on the dispute;
- a group of ministers was appointed to look at assistance for struggling operators BSNL and MTNL;
- Uninor contracted Alcatel-Lucent to provide managed services for its relaunch as Telewings Communications;
- new player Reliance Jio Infocomm (RJI) was set for the launch of its 4G service in late 2014;
- Aircel became the first of India’s mobile operators to receive approval to use spectrum as collateral for local and overseas loans.
Companies covered in this report include:
Aircel/Dishnet, Bharti Airtel, Loop Mobile (BPL Mobile), Quadrant (HFCL), Idea/Spice, Reliance Communications, Tata Teleservices, Vodafone Essar, Telewings (Uninor), Videocon, S Tel, Bharti Telenet, Reliance Infocomm, Reliance Jio Infocomm (RJI), Tata Teleservices, Sistema (Shyam Telelink), Swan Telecom, Videsh Sanchar Nigam Ltd (VSNL), Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL), Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd (MTNL), Data Access, Hughes Telecom, Videocon, AT&T, France Telecom, Tulip Telecom, SingTel, Hathway Cable, Datacom.