Welcoming the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB)’s clearance to Vodafone Plc buying out minority stakeholders in its Indian arm for Rs.10,141 crore, Max India Group Chairman Analjit Singh, who is also Vodafone India’s non-Executive Chairman, on Tuesday, said payments being made to him were consistent with the agreement he had signed with the British telecom giant.
“The consideration payable to Mr. Singh is consistent with the agreements signed between him and Vodafone, which were filed with the FIPB in 2007 and 2009,” an official statement said. Contrary to various media reports, Mr. Singh did not own any shares directly in Vodafone India, but had an indirect equity interest in the company through various holding companies, some of which had significant debt, the statement said.
Mr. Singh owns 51 per cent interest in Scorpio Beverages Pvt. Ltd., which has 24.65 per cent stake in Vodafone India. Scorpio Beverages will, therefore, get Rs.1,241 crore from the deal.
Commenting on the FIPB’s “extremely encouraging and most forward looking” decision, Mr. Singh said this would send the right signal to investors all over the globe who had plans to invest in India. “The decision is very important for ongoing reforms in India. In fact, it has a lot of symbolic significance because telecom is the first regulated sector to benefit from 100 per cent FDI,” he added.