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Bharti Airtel gets board nod to raise Rs 16,500 cr

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MUMBAI: Bharti Airtel’s board of directors has approved a plan to raise about Rs 16,500 crore through debt, including a fresh issue of $1 billion in overseas bonds, to help refinance loans and pay for spectrum. 

The board approved the issue of foreign currency bonds of up to $1 billion (Rs 6,482 crore) and sought fresh shareholder approval for issuance of non-convertible debentures of up to Rs 10,000 crore on a private-placement basis, the company said in a release to the BSE. 

At the meeting, the board also approved the transfer of 19 per cent equity stake in its direct-to-home (DTH) subsidiary Bharti Telemedia, which provides DTH services under the Airtel Digital TV brand, to Nettle Infrastructure Investments, a subsidiary company.

A part of the stake will be utilised for the completion of stake sale in Bharti Telemedia to Warburg Pincus Group. In December 2017, Bharti Airtel had agreed to sell 20 per cent equity stake in Bharti Telemedia to Warburg Pincus for approximately $350 million.

In January, the company had decided to transfer 25 per cent equity shares in Bharti Telemedia to its wholly owned subsidiary Nettle Infrastructure Investments. The company had also said that the stake transfer to Nettle does not include equity to be sold to private equity firm Warburg Pincus.

“Pursuant to Regulation 30 of SEBI (Listing Obligations and Disclosure Requirements) Regulations, 2015, we wish to inform you that the Board in its meeting held on March 12, 2018, has approved the transfer of 19 per cent equity shares of Bharti Telemedia Limited (‘Telemedia’), a subsidiary Company to Nettle Infrastructure Investments Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary company,” the release to the BSE stated.

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