The rights issue of Vodafone Idea Ltd., India’s largest telecom operator by subscriber base, was oversubscribed, with its promoters committing 18,250 crore, said two people aware of the development on Thursday.

According to a one of the person cited above, the issue received bids worth 26,950 crore compared with 25,000 crore on offer. The non-promoter portion of the issue received bids worth 8,700 crore.

The promoter contribution comprises 11,000 crore from the Vodafone Group, and 7,250 crore from the Aditya Birla Group.

The rights issue which opened on 10 April, offered 2,000 crore new shares at 12.50 apiece. The issue had received bids for 1,109 crore shares, according to data available on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) on Wednesday. Data on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) showed that bids worth 492 crore were received as of 8 pm on Wednesday.

Malaysia’s Axiata Group Berhad had decided not to participate in the rights issue, renouncing its shares entitlement in favour of investors through transactions on the BSE, cutting its stake in the company from 8.1% to roughly 2.6%.

Promoter shareholders - Vodafone Group and Aditya Birla Group - had reiterated that they intend to contribute up to 11,000 crore and up to 7,250 crore, respectively, amounting to a total of 18,250 crore, as part of the 25,000-crore rights issue.

The Vodafone Idea rights issue is one of the largest in recent times by any company.

Vodafone Idea Ltd. announced the rights issue on March 20 at a steep discount to its prevailing share price as it sought to attract enough subscribers. At that time, the shares were priced at a 61% discount to the then prevailing market price, Mint reported on March 20.

It is critical for Vodafone Idea to raise resources as it faces stiff competition from Reliance Jio - the telecom arm of Reliance Industries Ltd - which has hit revenue streams of other operators, since it entered the telecom sector in September 2016 with cheap tariffs.

Earlier this month, the board of Bharti Airtel Ltd approved a rights issue of 25,000 crore, as well as the raising of 7,000 crore through foreign currency perpetual bond issues, taking the total fund raising raise to 32,000 crore.

Vodafone Idea also plans to raise up to 5,000 crore by monetizing its stake in Indus Towers and has separately announced plans to sell its fibre network comprising more than 156,000 km of intra- and inter-city fibre routes.

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