Seeing the opportunity to build a global wireline powerhouse targeting business customers, Reliance Communications established itself as a viable business services competitor through a series of service provider network acquisitions.
But is the Indian conglomerate having a change of heart? While shouldering a large debt and ongoing capital expenditure for expanding its wireless business, it reportedly wants to sell its FLAG undersea fiber network and Reliance Enterprise Solutions for a cool $3 billion.
Of course, the Indian service provider, which is part of the larger Indian conglomerate Reliance, built up its worldwide presence through acquisitions. This journey began in 2003, when Reliance Communications bought the FLAG submarine fiber network--which sells wholesale capacity and other telecom services to other service providers and large enterprises--for $207 million. More recently, Reliance acquired California-based Ethernet provider Yipes in 2007 and Virtual Network Operator Vanco in 2008.
Apparently, Reliance has sought Deutsche Bank to be an advisor for the potential sale and any interested party will have to submit their bid in late January. Other than some statements from some unnamed sources, Deutsche Bank is apparently shopping the assets to Japan's KDDI in addition to U.S.-based AT&T and Verizon.
However, an unnamed Reliance spokesperson, said these reports are false. "We vehemently deny these speculations and rumors."