Vodafone Group has set the ball rolling for its long-awaited India IPO reports Reuters, it has invited banks including Citigroup, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, to submit pitches to manage it, people with direct knowledge of the deal reportedly said.The listing of Vodafone’s Indian unit is expected to raise between $2 billion and $2.5 billion making it the biggest IPO since state-owned Coal India's $3.5 billion listing in 2010. Vodafone had raised the prospect of a listing in India as early as 2011.

Other banks approached by the British telecoms heavyweight included Bank of America Merrill Lynch, UBS Group as well as Indian banks ICICI Securities and Kotak Investment Banking, the people added, requesting anonymity as the process is confidential.The selected banks have been asked to submit pitches next week to win underwriting mandates for the stock, the people familiar with the deal said.

Vodafone is likely to pick about half a dozen banks to manage the sale in the next two weeks. Vodafone India is likely to be valued at about $20 billion, according to analysts’ estimates.Vodafone, which in November said it had started preparations to float its Indian unit, reiterated what it said earlier.“We have previously said that we have started preparations for a potential IPO, which includes private conversations with banks, but this is a lengthy process and no decision will be made until we are at the end of it,” Vodafone said in a statement issued in London.

Goldman Sachs, UBS and Bank of America Merrill Lynch declined to comment. Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and the Indian banks did not respond to requests for comment.