Bharti Airtel and Vodafone India are making efforts to bring Anil Ambani-led Reliance Communications’ (RCom’s) subscribers into their family. On Saturday, Sunil Mittal-led telecom operator Airtel asked RCom’s customers to switch to its network through advertisements in major publications.
An advertisement appearing on the front page of Times of India said: “Airtel welcomes Reliance Communications customers, switch to India’s fastest network.”
While Vodafone hasn’t given an advertisement, it is offering unlimited local and STD calls, free national roaming (outgoing and incoming), and 1GB data per day for the first recharge of Rs 496 for 84 days. The offer is targeted at ‘new’ customers. This recharge will cater especially to heavy internet users and frequent roamers. New customers will get unlimited local and STD calling, along with 1GB data, for 28 days at Rs 177. These first recharges are applicable for MNP (mobile number portability) customers also.
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An RCom official said 60 per cent of the company’s customers who are using 2G-based technology can switch to its higher technology or else port to another operator.
How big brother Mukesh Ambani’s disruptive pricing shook Anil Ambani’s RCom
Freebies offered by Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio have adversely impacted RCom. It is expected to shut down major parts of its wireless business in the next 30 days (November-end) to cut widening losses. RCom will be giving its 2G-based customers the option to switch to 3G- or 4G-based technology and has asked most of its employees to exit the company by November 30.
Anil, the younger sibling, had inherited the telecom business of the Reliance group following the division of the family empire between the two brothers. However, with the non-compete clause in the agreement coming to an end, elder brother Mukesh has made a dramatic entry into the telecom sector and shaken up older players with his disruptive pricing.
RCom has a whopping Rs 44,000 crore in loans on its books and is facing problems in repaying its dues as earnings have been eroded due to the disruptive pricing by Reliance Jio, which is offering voice calls for free.