Bharti Airtel shelves DTH sell-off plans

Rebecca Hawkes | 29-11-2013

Bharti Airtel has abandoned plans to sell a quarter of its stake in its direct-to-home (DTH) satellite TV division Airtel Digital TV, according to the Times of India.

Talks with prospective buyers, including LA-based investment company Saban Capital, private equity firm Carlyle, and Liberty Media, all failed to reach the desired valuation of around US$1.5 billion, the newspaper reports.

The DTH share sale was mooted by India's largest telecommunications company to help reduce $9.5 billion of debt – accumulated by Bharti's acquisition of African operations formerly run by Zain, and its spend during 3G mobile spectrum bidding in India.