Future Group to become mobile operator franchisee

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Kishore Biyani-led Future Group has said that it will invest around one billion rupees to enter the mobile-services space as a franchisee for network operators, and is in talks with several firms for a potential launch next year.

Confirming this in a monthly newsletter, CEO Kishore Biyani said: “We expect to spend one billion rupees ($24 million) on the mobile foray, and have begun talking with some network operators.”

The company has appointed consultancy firm McKinsey & Co. and UK’s Value Partners Group as advisers for its telecom plans.

India currently does not allow mobile virtual network operators (MVNO), who do not own networks but rent them out from other providers. However, franchisees are allowed in the country.

The government has said it is considering allowing the MVNO model in the country. The telecoms regulator in May started consultations with firms and other stakeholders for formulating guidelines for MVNOs.

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