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McClatchy-Tribune  06/11/2014 9:52 AM ET
BRIEF: R-Com expands 3G footprint to five new circles [Mint, New Delhi :: ]

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June 11--MUMBAI -- Reliance Communications Ltd (R-Com), India's fourth-largest telecom services provider, said on Wednesday that it had expanded its 3G footprint to five new circles in India -- Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Uttar Pradesh (East).

This takes its 3G presence to 18 circles.

"Together these circles account for 80% of smartphone sales in the country," said Gurdeep Singh,chief executive officer of the consumer business at Reliance Communications. "This can help us attract a disproportionate share of high-value customers from the corporate and SME (small and medium enterprise) segments. "

Reliance Communications had 37.4 million data customers, including 12.9 million 3G customers as of 31 March, making it the largest 3G customer base in India. With the expansion to five more circles, this number is expected to rise to 14 million.

The company's closest rival and India's number one telecom operator Bharti Airtel Ltd had 11 million 3G customers as of 31 March. This is out of a total 3G subscriber base in the country of 30 million.

Shares of Reliance Communications fell 3.95% to Rs.148.25, while the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex fell 0.43% to 25,473.89 points.


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