No matter how hard CNBC anchors may try to glorify businessmen, big business everywhere has its murky side. Arun Sarin of Vodafone had this rant at a Global IIT conference in San Francisco. Sarin while calling for more transparency in acquisitions was referring to some of his rival bidders - in $ 11 bn HutchEssar deal which vodafone had won - aiming to scuttle the deal using their political clout.
In May, Vodafone completed the acquisition of controlling stake in India’s Hutch-Essar from Hong Kong-based Hutchison Telecom International Ltd (HTIL). Indian regulations impose a cap of 74% for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Telecom sector. There’s some confusion on the `Indianness' of a 15% slice held by HTIL’s partners and if upheld, would add up the foreign holding for Vodafone and Essar to 89 per cent – that is, violating the FDI cap.
So get less vocal, Mr.Sarin….you aren’t completely out of the woods as yet...rivals could still be out there…