Billionaire Gautam Adani's group confirmed its participation into the race to acquire telecom spectrum on Saturday, saying it will be used to build a private network to service its enterprises ranging from airports to electricity and data centres.
Adani Group Statement
As India prepares to roll out next generation 5G services through this action, we are one of the many applicants participating in the open bidding process.
We are participating in the 5G spectrum auction to provide private network solutions along with enhanced cyber security in the airport, ports & logisitics, power generation, transmission, distribution, and various manufacturing operations.
Also, if we are awarded 5G spectrum in the open bidding, it will also align with our recent announcement of significantly increasing the Adani Foundation's investments in Education, Healthcare and Skill Development in rural areas, each of which stands to benefit from 5G technology.
In addition, as we build our own digital platform encouraging super apps, edge data cantres and industry command and control centres, we will need ultra high quality data streaming capabilities through a high frequency and low latency 5G network across all our businesses.
All of this is aligned with our nation building philosophy and supporting an Atmanirbhar Bharat.
Ambani vs Adani
Ambani and Adani, who hail from Gujarat and went on to build mega business groups, had till recently not had a direct face-off. While the former expanded from the oil and petrochemicals business into telecom and retail, the latter diversified from the ports segment to coal, energy distribution and aviation.
But increasingly, their interests are overlapping, setting what some say is the stage for a clash.
Adani has in recent months set up a subsidiary for a foray into petrochemicals -- a business that Ambani's father Dhirubhai began with before its downstream and upstream operations.
Ambani too has announced multi-billion-dollar plans for new energy business, including Giga factories for solar panels, batteries, green hydrogen and fuel cells. Adani, who had previously announced plans to be the world's largest renewable energy producer by 2030, too has unveiled hydrogen ambitions.
And now, if the Adani group participates in the 5G auction on July 26, it will be the first direct competition with Ambani.
The Cabinet, last month, approved 5G auctions at reserve prices recommended by the sector regulator Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI). The regulator had recommended an about 39 per cent cut in floor price for the sale of 5G spectrum for mobile services.
The validity of the right to use spectrum will be 20 years.