Gautam Adani, Asia’s richest, is bidding for 5G phone airwaves, set to take on Jio, Airtel, Vi

Billionaire Gautam Adani led Adani Group is participating in an auction of 5G airwaves scheduled for later this month, the company said in a statement.

Billionaire Gautam Adani’s conglomerate, Adani Group, is participating at an auction of 5G airwaves by India scheduled for later this month, the company said in a statement Saturday, as it seeks to enhance its presence in the country’s digital space.

The company, which is seeking to build its own digital platform, superapps and data centers, said it will need ultra-high quality data streaming capabilities that the 5G network offers. Besides, it will also help set up a private network spanning all its businesses — from airports to manufacturing companies.

“We are participating in the 5G spectrum auction to provide private network solutions along with enhanced cybersecurity in the airport, ports and logistics, power generation, transmission, distribution, and various manufacturing operations,” Adani group said.

The company will join India’s three private-sector mobile operatorsReliance Jio Infocomm Ltd., Bharti Airtel Ltd. and Vodafone Idea Ltd. — that are expected to bid for the airwaves. Adani, however, will not be entering the consumer mobility space, according to the statement.

Companies other than phone carriers can also bid for airwaves at the latest auction that will begin July 26, the Department of Telecom said in rules released last month, allowing companies to set up their own private captive networks.

With a net worth of almost $101.5 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Adani has added about $25 billion to his wealth this year on the back of a runaway rally in his companies’ shares, making him the biggest wealth gainer globally.

Last month, Adani who is also Asia’s richest person, along with his family, pledged to give 600 billion rupees ($7.7 billion) to a slew of social causes to celebrate his 60th birthday. The donation will be managed by the Adani Foundation and will be targeted at bolstering health care, education and skill development.

The company said if it wins airwaves, that will help enhance investments by the Adani Foundation.

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