Leading Indian telecom players Bharti Airtel and Reliance Communications have joined the race to acquire the African business of Kuwait-based Zain Group. Bharti and RCom have joined French company Vivendi, which is still locked in discussions with the Kuwait group for a business valued at $12 billion.
Currently, Bharti is in talks with South African telecom major MTN for a partnership that could lead to the merger of the two entities. Last year, both Bharti and RCom had made bids for MTN but the talks failed. Big foreign players have in recent times been struggling for a foothold in the emerging markets of Africa, particularly Nigeria.