NEW DELHI: Faced with liabilities of as much as Rs 35,500 crore arising from the Supreme Court’s ruling on adjusted gross revenues (AGR), Bharti Airtel’s board of directors has decided to raise $3 billion (around Rs 21,500 crore) through equity dilution and debt funding avenues.
The company has been directed by the Supreme Court to pay up pending AGR dues, estimated by the Department of Telecom at Rs 35,586 crore, to the Central government within three months of the October 24 verdict. The large provisioning requirements needed for such a payout had pushed the company into its largest quarterly loss of Rs 23,045 crore during the second quarter of the current financial year.
Bharti Airtel owes DoT Rs 21,682 crore in licence fee and another Rs 13,904.01 crore in spectrum usage charges. However, these figures do not include the dues of Telenor and Tata Teleservices, which Airtel acquired.
According to the company’s filings with the stock exchanges, the board decided during its meeting on Wednesday to raise $2 billion through instruments like qualified institutional placement, compulsory convertible debentures or other convertible securities, ADR (American depositary receipts) and GDR (global depositary receipts).
The firm also plans to raise $1 billion through the issue of foreign currency convertible bonds or similar securities in foreign currency. It may also choose to go for a $1 billion fundraising measure through redeemable non-convertible debentures or similar securities.