Bharti to add 100 million users, may bid for wi-max: Sunil Mittal

The Bharti-MTN deal falling through has disappointed corporate India. This is the second time the much awaited deal has come to a grinding halt. Why did the deal fall through? The reason was the much publicised lack of certain South African government approvals.

In an interview with CNBC-TV18, Sunil Mittal, chairman and MD, Bharti Enterprises, said that the dual listed company (DLC) approval was not required in the first stage of their talks. ''Maybe the government or treasury, in their wisdom, wanted to see the eventual path of where the companies will end up being in terms of the structure.'' 

Mittal further said that the company would add 100 million subscribers in the next three years and that the 100 million subscribers would primarily be from India. He further said that Bharti was most likely to bid for Wimax.

CNBC-TV18 shares with domain-b an exclusive interview with Mittal

Let me begin by asking you, where did it really go wrong?
I think it is all in the public domain now. All of you have covered this event extremely well. I was surprised at the media coverage we have seen in this round for MTN. I mean the companies had come together to put out a partnership together, which was not to be. We needed certain approvals from the South African government, in particular their treasury, and that did not come through.

MTN had actually applied and that is all that we heard officially about the exchange control exemption. Was it connected with the dual listing?
We would not know what applications were made. But yes, you are right, an application was made and I believe that a letter from treasury was received by them on September 11, which is when the dual listed company (DLC) issue came up.