Tata Group has no plans to enter 5G consumer space, says N Chandrasekaran

N Chandrasekaran

N Chandrasekaran

Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran on Tuesday said the conglomerate does not have any plans to have a 5G offering for consumers. He said the group, which exited its consumer-facing telecom service due to losses a few years ago, has concentrated its efforts on building modern technology infrastructure for 4G and 5G and is also investing in 6G.

“On the 5G, we don’t have plans for getting into consumer business. We have exited that business,” Chandrasekaran said at the ‘Lokmat Maharashtrian of Year 2022’ award ceremony here.

He said the technology being built by the group companies is fully indigenous, and will be tested first for being eventually implemented on a large scale. There are already enquiries for its offerings, he added.

Asked about the group’s plans to consolidate four airlines in its portfolio, Chandrasekaran said it wants to create a single airline with two platforms — a full-service carrier and a low cost carrier (LCC).

“We will definitely have both full services and LCC but we want to make it a world leading airline of scale, where Indians are able to fly everywhere. That’s the goal, its a long journey,” he said, adding that they are working at great speed after the takeover of Air India from the government.

The Tata group is working on all aspects of Air India, including human resources, technology, modernisation of fleet, engine maintenance and safety, he said.

Chandrasekaran further said India is extremely well placed in the world which is witnessing geopolitical tensions, inflation, commodity price increases and rate tightening.

“We have everything going for us… in terms of urban economy, rural economy, consumer economy, infrastructure-led growth. So india is going to have the best of global markets for the next few years,” he said.

The rupee is appreciating against every other currency and depreciating only against the dollar, he said, adding that we will have to manage inflation.

Chandrasekaran, who also sits on the central board of RBI, said he believes that India will have to support growth given the tremendous opportunity the country has.

He said the Tata group and other industrial houses are chasing opportunities of investing in electronics, renewable energy, electric vehicles and other modern sectors, and are engaged with the newly formed Maharashtra government under Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.

Reminiscing that he came to Mumbai as a 24-year-old for his first job with TCS in 1986, Chandrasekaran said the city and the state have given him everything. “Living in Bombay actually taught me every aspect of life. It’s a city that is full of opportunities, makes you smart, makes you handle any situation and has very kind people,” he remarked.

Chandrasekaran said he landed in central Mumbai’s Dadar railway station on what was then called the Bombay Mail from Chennai, and stayed in Vashi in the satellite city of Navi Mumbai initially.