BSNL considering spinning off tower biz

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New Delhi, Apr 24 (UNI) State-run Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) today said it is considering to spin off its telecoms tower business, as other mobile phone firms have done, to save operating costs and capital expenditure.

''We are examining this, but have not decided as of now,'' BSNL CMD Kuldeep Goyal told reporters here.

The firm has 32,000 GSM towers and 7,000 CDMA towers.

BSNL was said to be in the process of hiving off its towers into a separate company and lease it to other telcos.

Several other service providers including the likes of Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Essar, Idea Cellular, Reliance Communications, Spice and Idea Cellular have adopted this business model to reduce both their capex and opex as they expand their services to rural India.

Bharti, which has spun off its tower unit, has a towers joint venture with Vodafone and Idea Cellular Ltd.

Reliance too has spun off its tower unit and Tata Teleservice Ltd is expected to follow suit.

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