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Hutch buys three Indian cellcos

Scoops up 12m customers

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Hutchison Whampoa is buying three Indian mobile companies for $1.15bn.

Hutchison, which operates in India as a Hutchison Essar Ltd - a joint venture with Essar Teleholdings Ltd, is buying BPL Mumbai, BPL Cellular and Spacetel.

BPL Mumbai is number two in the city with 1.3m customers. BPL Cellular has 1.5m customers in MAharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Kerala. Spacetel has applied for licenses in seven areas which Hutchison Essar does not currently operate - Madhya Pradesh, North East, Himachal Pradesh, Bihar, Orissa, Assam and Jammu and Kashmir. Hutch is paying $6m for the firm.

The deals should give Hutch 12m customers and operate in all 23 licence areas.

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