Three times it happened with the same company, twice by Bharti and once by Reliance Communications. Trying to merge with MTN of South Africa in the last year by the biggest telecom companies in India came up with nothing. It is interesting to note Bharti did this twice, despite their fantastic organizational setup. If we do acknowledge that Reliance failing to close the MTN tie-up has something to do with the big brother syndrome, it is surprising that Bharti will do it twice with the same result.
There could be a slew of reasons for the failure in negotiations, including respective laws, regulations, unions, shareholder issues, accounting, markets, and whatever else imaginable. But trying to do it 3 times in a year is a bit too much. MTN offers a nice relationship to the Indian telecoms with its own emerging markets to add to India’s own aggressive expansion of its mobile markets. But it really is not the only available opportunity.