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Will Qualcomm Sell Its BWA Spectrum in India?


7:30 AM -- Mobile operators Bharti Airtel Ltd. (Mumbai: BHARTIARTL) and Aircel Ltd. are showing interest in buying some of Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM)'s BWA (broadband wireless access) spectrum licenses, according to a report in The Economic Times.

Earlier this year, Qualcomm participated in the auction of 2.3GHz spectrum, and won licenses in four circles (service areas) -- Delhi, Mumbai, Haryana, and Kerala -- as part of its effort to introduce TD-LTE technology to India. (See India's BWA Auction Ends in $8.2B Drama, Qualcomm Wins India Spectrum, Qualcomm Still Silent on India Partners, and Qualcomm Unveils LTE Plans for India.)

Now it could be prepared to sell those assets. The report suggests that Bharti Airtel is interested in the New Delhi license, while Aircel is interested in Mumbai and Kerala.

The report adds that Qualcomm is looking for a minimum of 50 billion Indian rupees (US$1.12 billion) for its licenses, a little more than it paid for the spectrum.

Qualcomm earlier sold two 13 percent stakes in its BWA business to Tulip Telecom Ltd. and GTL Infrastructure Ltd. (See Qualcomm Names India LTE Investors and Tulip Invests in Qualcomm Unit.)

— Gagandeep Kaur, India Editor, Light Reading

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