[with inputs from Cerius Shah]
— Business Standard reports that BPL Mobile, whose subsidiary Shippingstop.com has received a Letter of Intent from the Indian government for launching services in 22 circles, is preparing a warchest of $2.5 Billion. Shippingstop.com, now called Loop Telecom, is considering a both equity and debt, and may even go for an IPO.
— Russian conglomerate Sistema, which had picked up a 10 percent stake in Shyam Telelink last year, plans to borrow $10 Billion for projects, $4-7 Billion of which will be for building a telecom network in India, reports Bloomberg. Importantly, Sistema has increased its stake in Shyam Telelink to 51 percent – a majority stake. The Foreign Direct Investment limit for telecom is 74 percent.
— BSNLs proposed WiMax network will cover Gujarat, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Goa. They’ve inked a revenue share deal with US based Soma Networks for deployment, though there’s no word on the ratio or revenue stream (subscription, advertising or data mining). WiMax should be up and running in Ahmedabad by June-July this year, though complete deployment will take 3 years. They’re using the WiMax standard 802.16e-2005, and will cover 70 cities by mid-2008 with 50,000 kiosks. More at ET