Indian phone mast companies merge

RELIANCE Communications, India's second-biggest mobile phone operator, has agreed to merge its communication mast business with that of GTL Infrastructure to create what is claimed to be the world's largest telecoms infrastructure group not controlled by an operator.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but the combined operations would have an enterprise value of more than $11 billion (7.3bn) and would own more than 80,000 masts.

Reliance, controlled by billionaire Anil Ambani, earlier this month announced plans for an independent tower unit.