Dialog Axiata takes over Bharti Airtel’s Sri Lankan business

22 April 2024

Dialog Axiata has signed a definitive agreement to effectively take over Bharti Airtel’s Sri Lankan operations, reducing the number of mobile operators in the country to three.

Under the deal, Dialog will acquire 100% of issued shares in Airtel Lanka, then give Bharti Airtel ordinary voting shares via a share swap, which will allow Airtel to retain a 10.35% stake in the combined company.

The deal remains subject to approval of Dialog's shareholders and the usual legal, corporate and regulatory compliance procedures, but already has approval from the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka (TRCSL).

The merger will enable Axiata to leverage economies of scale and reduce duplication of infrastructure, as well as save costs and improve operational efficiencies.
“This merger brings together the strengths of two leading telco groups and bodes well for the growth and sustainability of Sri Lanka's flagship telecom sector,” said Hans Wijayasuriya, Axiata’s group executive director and CEO of its telecommunications business.

“The merger will create value for the shareholders of Dialog Axiata PLC and Axiata Group through achievable synergies,” added Axiata Group CEO and MD Vivek Sood.

It will also further solidify its market share. Dialog already leads the market with an estimated 57% share with close to 18 million subscribers. Airtel Lanka will add another estimated 5 million to Dialog’s subscriber base.