By Marcus Leach

Vodafone has announced that it will take control of Essar’s 33% of the Vodafone Essar Limited company, giving it 75% of the Indian operator overall.

Vodafone Group has said that the Essar Group has exercised its underwritten put option over 22% of Vodafone Essar Limited (‘VEL’).

Following the exercise by the Essar Group of its put option, Vodafone has exercised its call option over the remaining 11% of VEL owned by the Essar Group resulting in a total cash payment of US$5 billion. Final settlement is anticipated to be no later than November 2011.

Vodafone Group’s published net debt figure already includes this US$5 billion.