India's telecom sector worth $100b, analysts say

India's telecommunications sector is now worth nearly $100 billion, analysts, quoted by The Economic Times, said.

Analysts also said this is due to the soaring valuations of telecommunications companies, both listed and yet-to-be listed, the report said.

Listed companies like Bharti Airtel and Reliance Communications boast of a valuation in the range of $26 billion to $27 billion and $19 billion to $20 billion, respectively, the analysts said.
The report also said analysts see the valuation for yet-to-be listed biggies like, BSNL and Idea, ranging from $8 billion to $30 billion.

"Valuation in the sector, which has high consumer involvement will rapidly rise and telecom leads the pack followed by real estate and insurance,' Rajeev Memani, managing partner at Ernst & Young was quoted as saying.

In the last 10 years, the telecom industry has seen several high profile exits by MNCs as well as local players such as, AT&T, Telecom Italia, British Telecom, Telstra, Max and Cingular.

Others who moved out included, Aircel, BPL, Escorts, RPG, Usha Martin, JT Mobile, Hindujas and France Telecom. Vodafone, which too had exited earlier, is now bidding for Hutch to make a comeback, the report said.
Over the years, such exits and entry of new players leading to consolidation has resulted in strong value creation.

'This is one sector which has benefited the common man like no other and is being fuelled by a young population and low teledensity," Romal Shetty, director at KPMG India was also quoted as saying. "If this is the way things go, telecom will have a far bigger play in India's economy.'

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