March 17, 2014 / 12:42 PM / in 4 years

Reliance Jio signs tower leasing pact with Viom

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Reliance Industries’ (RELI.NS) telecommunications unit, which holds nationwide 4G permits, has agreed to lease mobile phone masts from infrastructure provider Viom Networks, the companies said on Monday.

Telecommunication towers are pictured through hanging flower pots at a residential building in Kolkata December 11, 2012. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri/Files

Reliance Jio Infocomm’s agreement with Viom comes after its tower-leasing pacts with local firms Reliance Communications (RLCM.NS) and Bharti Infratel (BHRI.NS). Reliance Jio also has an agreement with Bharti Infratel’s parent Bharti Airtel (BRTI.NS) to share network.

Reliance Jio and unlisted Viom did not give financial details of the agreement. Viom has 42,000 mobile phone towers, according to a joint statement.

Reliance Industries, controlled by India’s richest man Mukesh Ambani bought 4G airwaves in a 2010 government sale, but has yet to launch services. It added some airwaves it can use to offer 4G services from an auction this year.

Viom Networks is a joint venture between India’s SREI Infrastructure and mobile carrier Tata Teleservices.

Reporting by Devidutta Tripathy; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore

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