If you are an investor then going for Airtel makes sense as
- It is a participant in the OneWeb and the largest shareholder. OneWeb is meant to connect the unconnected to the Internet using Satellite Constellation. This stands in competition to Elon Musk’s Star Link and Jeff Bezos’s Kuiper Systems Program (Link)
- Bharti Airtel has tied up with Google for getting a US $1 Billion investment for the Indian Market and to promote the products of Google to retail, enterprise(MSME), and Government (Link)
- Bharti Airtel is the largest shareholder in Indus Towers and this will be pivotal during the 5G service rollout in the metros and towns of India (Ref)
Despite the turbulence linked to AGR, Cut Throat Competition due to Jio’s Entry into the 4G Space leading to lower ARPU(Average Revenue Per User), Increase in debt & equity dilution to raise funds – The Stock of Bharti Airtel has done decently well in the past 5years as compared to its peers – Reliance Jio and Vodafone Idea.
So, as a safe investor wanting to lower the downside, Bharti Airtel is the most suitable Option.
Having said that, Vodafone Idea is the dark horse in the duopoly race between Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel. The reasons for the same are
- Like YES Bank Bailout in 2020, Vodafone Idea has got a lease of life with the conversion of debt to equity for the AGR Payout. The shareholder in this case is the Government of India. This adds value in two ways – Stability (Government as a shareholder) & Breathing Space (Equity Holders can wait to encash their returns as compared to debt holders)
- As Microsoft & Google have partnered with Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel respectively, the two players left in the field are Amazon & Vodafone Idea. They are in talks for capital infusion in the telecom player that will be vital for operations and for 5G bids
- Vodafone Idea(Vi) has a suite of services to offer in the form of IoT for infrastructure and enterprise owing to the backing of the parent – Vodafone PLC
- It got cash infusion through the equity route when Vodafone PLC sold its stake in Indus Towers to Bharti Airtel
- Despite the loss of customer base to Jio and Airtel, Vodafone Idea(Vi) has come up with innovative offers and services to attract and retain customers
The Stock of Vodafone Idea has butchered in the past 5years as compared to its peers – Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel but considering its placement in the ecosystem, strengths, and journey ahead, it can turn to be a dark horse like TTML (which turned out to be multi-bagger after having been written off by industry experts and analysts)
Do your analysis and invest your money wisely as per your risk appetite
Hope this helps