Telenor Group has completed the acquisition of the 26-per cent ownership stake in Telewings held by Lakshdeep Investment & Finance, taking full ownership of the company that operates under the brand name Uninor in India.
The acquisition of the stake was finalised after Telenor received approval from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) to increase its stake from 74 per cent to 100 per cent, the company stated in a release.
"Telenor Group has a long-term view on India, and we are encouraged by the strong growth of our Indian operation. The company continues to capture market share every month and is leading in new subscriber additions in many of its circles," said Sigve Brekke, executive vice president of Telenor Group and chairman of the board of Telewings.
Telewings, meanwhile, reported a 40-per cent increase in revenues for the first half of 2014 compared to the same period last year.
Earlier this year, the company expanded its service portfolio from voice to basic internet services. Close to 20 per cent of the company's subscribers are now active internet users.
Telenor's Indian arm is present in seven circles with a total population of around 600 million people. The company has participated in two separate auctions to acquire spectrum in the range of 5 MHz to 7.2 MHz in seven circles. With a network of more than 1,500 stores and 365,000 points of sale.
Telewings claims to have the second-largest distribution network in its operating circles. The company is also planning to launch services in Assam early next year.
Telenor Group has mobile operations in 13 markets in the Nordic region, Central and Eastern Europe and in Asia, as well as an economic stake of 33 per cent in VimpelCom Ltd, operating in 17 markets.
Headquartered in Norway, Telenor Group is one of the world's major mobile operators with 176 million mobile subscriptions in its consolidated operations per Q2 2014, revenues of NOK 104 billion ($15.86 billion) in 2013, and a workforce of about 33,000.