Brookfield Asset Management is in talks with Reliance Industries that could see it acquire a controlling stake in Reliance Jio’s telecom assets.
Jio is planning to spin off its fibre and tower assets – which have an estimated value of as much as $15 billion - into two separate businesses, reported The Times of India. The operator accrued debts of around $40 billion as it rolled out its fixed and mobile networks.
Currently Jio has 300,000km of fibre and 220,000 towers, but it could acquire more towers when the Indian Company’s Authority begins selling off the assets from Reliance Communications’ shuttered mobile unit.
Canadian group Brookfield has had its eye on the Indian infrastructure market for a while, and was mooted as a possibly buyer for the 76,000 tower sites offloaded by Vodafone India and Idea Cellular ahead of their merger. However, American Tower emerged as the eventual buyer.
Last year, the investment firm acquired a gas pipeline from another Reliance Industries subsidiary for $2 billion. Globally, it controls assets with an estimated value of over $330 billion.