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BT Buys Indian Internet Firm i2i

In a potentially $100 million deal, the British telecom will acquire the distributor of its Infonet managed network services in India

BT is to buy Indian enterprise services company i2i Enterprise, a move which makes the UK telco the largest foreign-owned global carrier operating in India.

Mumbai-based i2i specialises in enterprise IP communications services and is already the distributor of BT's Infonet managed network services in India.

The deal could be worth in the region of $100m, according to Camille Mendler, analyst at Yankee Group.

Mendler said: "[The deal] ticks a lot of boxes for someone who's trying to position itself as a global service provider that's got breadth and depth in certain markets."

She added: "It's not just about BT providing local support in India for customers who come from outside of India but also tapping into the Indian market."

Mendler said the acquisition is "a significant commitment to the Indian market" and will fit "very well" with BT's existing business as i2i already deals with the same key business areas as BT Global Services - enterprise mobility, CRM and managed network services.

She said: "[These services] are already core to BT global service activities elsewhere."

Mendler believes the deal is a positive move for BT but the ultimate success will depend on how well the incumbent telco can integrate i2i into its business.

Andy Green, CEO of BT Global Services, said India is "a cornerstone" in the company's plans to expand into global markets.

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