Vodafone Idea to make major strategic announcement today, rebranding likely

The relaunch comes even as the parent Vodafone Group does not intend to put any equity into Vodafone Idea. Photo: Bloomberg
Amid the ongoing financial crisis, Vodafone-Idea is likely to make a strategic announcement on Monday. According to reports, the telecom major is set to rebrand itself. The development comes in the backdrop of the telecom company's decision to raise up to Rs 25,000 crore by way of share sale and debt from new investors. 

Vodafone Idea is owned by Vodafone plc and the Aditya Birla group (ABG).

According to reports, the rebranding is likely to have a combined brand identity and advertising around it as the telco has till now been advertising the two brands separately, officials familiar with the matter said. Following the relaunch, the company is likely to unveil new packages for its subscribers across the country. 

The board of directors of the company decided to raise the funds via equity share sale of up to Rs 15,000 crore and another tranche of up to Rs 15,000 crore via a public offer or private placement of non-convertible debentures. However, the total will not exceed Rs 25,000 crore, the company said in a statement to the stock exchanges.

The relaunch comes even as the parent Vodafone Group does not intend to put any equity into Vodafone Idea.

The company is also considering credit enhancement to provide additional comfort to investors from across the world to ease off its debt worth Rs 1.7 trillion, The Economic Times reported. 

Vodafone Idea’s Ebitda (earnings before interest, depreciation, tax, and amortisation) of Rs 4,100 crore in the June quarter of FY21 was not enough to pay for its capex, interest, deferred spectrum, and the adjusted gross revenue (AGR) dues, all of which amount to over Rs 30,000 crore annually.

The company was hit hard by the Supreme Court ruling in October last year, when it was asked to pay Rs 58,254 crore of AGR dues to the government. However, on Tuesday, the court gave 10 years to all the telecom companies to pay their past dues. Vodafone Idea has paid Rs 7,854 crores as AGR to the Department of Telecommunications.

In the first quarter of the financial year, Vodafone Idea’s quarterly loss increased to Rs 25,460 crore as compared to Rs 11,643 crore reported in the March quarter of FY20.

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