Vodafone Idea’s Struggle for Survival, Taliban’s Takeover of Afghanistan and The Future of Cryptocurrencies in India
Vodafone Idea’s Struggle for Survival Exacerbates Significantly
Vodafone Idea, India’s third largest telecommunications company is currently undergoing a desperate and last-ditched plight for struggle as well as stability, as the disconcerting debt and total liability which the significantly prominent national player, aggregating at excess of $24.2 billion (Rs. 1.8 lakh crore) (including Adjusted Growth Revenue - AGR), has precariously positioned VI at the brink of insolvency.
This enormous figure has gained aggrandisement as a result of an immensely declining situation for VI particularly in the last two years,, unsustainable corporate model as well as hardships invoked through the pandemic.
Sourcing figures from India Today, Vodafone Idea’s first quarter loss of fiscal year 2022 received a significant exacerbation hike, with the company having posted a loss of $984 million (Rs. 7139 crore), a 4.7% increase in the losses posted in the previous quarter (Q4, 2021). Furthermore, it is reported that VI has lost over 50 million customers since January 2020, and has failed to report a single quarter in which the company was capable of producing profits, since the merger between Vodafone and Idea in 2018.
The situation becomes further aggravated through the fact that VI fell $20 million (Rs. 150 crore) short on their payment of license fees towards the government, for the first quarter, this serves as the second consecutive quarter in which the telecommunications giant has experienced this inability to properly pay license fees.
KM Birla, the whilom chairman of the company proposed to provide his group’s 27% stake in the company to the government, and requested for government intervention as a means of preventing the company from defaulting, however, such offers and efforts have been regarded as insufficient of rescuing the loss-producing company, as the government has stated. In addition, Vodafone PLC CEO, Nick Read, informed that additional equity and investments will not be produced and supplied to Indian operations.
A complete VI insolvency will possess widespread reverberations, including but not limited to the AGR dues which Vodafone possesses converting into non-performing assets, unemployment for employees of VI, as well as greater transitioning of the telecommunications industry into an oligopoly/duopoly.
Taliban’s Takeover of Afghanistan Sparks Uncertainty for Indian Businesses in the Country
The insurgent and rapid overthrowing of the Afghan government by the Taliban has invoked prominent uncertainty for the future of Indian businesses operating in the nation, including Indian technological, media, telecommunications, infrastructural and development firms. India has expended an excess of $3 billion in developments of infrastructure in Afghanistan, across the previous 2 decades, and served as the largest regional contributor towards development in the nation.
Prolonged Ambivalence Towards the Future of Cryptocurrencies in India
India’s equivocal and tempestuous stance on cryptocurrencies continues to persist, with the Cryptocurrency and Official Regulation of Online Currencies Act, 2021, the act which would prohibit all foreign and private cryptocurrencies from operating in the nation, receiving no further indication as to when it would be thoroughly debated and voted upon. The proposed legislation was slated to be discussed in the recently concluded Monsoon Session of Parliament, yet discussion on it failed to transpire in the session.
India’s prominence in the cryptocurrency industry has been on an exponential growth trajectory, and a complete interdiction could potentially devastate cryptocurrencies globally. Prominent figures in the crypto industry, such as the co-founder and CEO of Mudrex, a crypto trading platform, Edul Patel and Siddarth Menon, CEO of crypto exchange platform WazirX, have urged the government opts for a progressive and calibrated stance on the proposals of such legislation.
Written & Edited By: Ronojoy Borpujari