Sistema open to acquisition in India

Sistema open to acquisition in India New Delhi: Russian conglomerate Sistema, which provides telecom services in India under the MTS brand, Monday said it is open to acquisitions to expand its operations in the Indian market.

Vsevolod Rozanov, president and chief executive officer of Sistema Shyam TeleServices Ltd (SSTL), told reporters here that the company was exploring the possibility but would take any call on it only after the Supreme Court verdict on the cancellation of its licences.

SSTL has filed a curative petition in the Supreme Court seeking to restore its licences.

SSTL is a joint venture of Sistema and Indian firm Shyam Group.

Rozanov said SSTL was hopeful of a positive verdict from the Supreme Court.

"We intend to continue our operations in India. We are hopeful that the curative petition will lead to a favourable outcome," he said.

"Alternatively, the company is also working on other plans and operational models to ensure the continuity of brand MTS in India," Rozanov said.

However, he refused to elaborate on the plans. "I can't elaborate on the plan. It will depend on the decisions of the Supreme Court," he said.

Asked whether Sistema is in talks with any Indian firms for acquisition or partnership, Rozanov said: "there is nothing serious to report on this."

Rozanov was talking to media persons here after announcing financial results for July-September quarter.

The company has posted an accumulated loss of Rs.10,100 crore (Rs.101 billion) as at the end of September 2012.

SSTL's mobile subscriber base increased marginally by 0.3 percent quarter-on-quarter to reach 16.64 million as on Sep 30.

IANS