Airtel India adds 21 mn 4G customers, drops Capex

Airtel India CEO Gopal Vittal today revealed the telecom operator’s achievements during the December quarter of 2019.
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Airtel has added 21 million 4G customers to its mobile network and delivered better value to our customers through the Airtel Thanks program. 4G data customers of Airtel increased 60.6 percent to 123.8 million from 77.1 million in the same quarter last year. Data traffic achieved growth of 72 percent during the third quarter.

“We are on track to shut down our 3G networks across India and re-farm the 900 and 2100 band spectrum to further boost our 4G footprint to serve the surging demand for high speed data,” Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO, India & South Asia, Airtel, said.

Capex

Airtel India’s Capex decreased 23 percent to INR 40,823 million in December quarter against INR 53,091 million in the same period in 2018.

Airtel India’s Capex dropped 44 percent to INR 111,516 million in the first nine months of fiscal 2019-20 against INR 200,791 million in the same period in previous fiscal.

Airtel’s mobile business had Capex spending of Rs 25,415 million, primarily to enhance its indoor coverage, voice quality and data capacities.

Airtel India had 189,857 network towers vs 175,300 network towers in the same quarter last year. Airtel India has 188,591 mobile broadband towers. The company has 473,859 mobile broadband base stations as compared to 371,562 mobile broadband base stations at the end of the corresponding quarter last year and 461,891 at the end of the previous quarter.

Revenue

Airtel India revenues increased 7 percent to Rs 15,797 crore during the December quarter. Airtel increased its wireless tariffs in December. Airtel India’s mobile revenues rose 9.6 percent. ARPU of Airtel India has grown from Rs 128 in Sept to 135 in Dec.

The total revenues grew 10.5 percent to Rs 21,947 crore, while consolidated EBITDA rose 48.3 percent to Rs 9,350 crore. Consolidated EBITDA margin increased 11.4 percent to 42.6 percent in the quarter as compared to 31.2 percent in the same quarter last year.

Airtel reported net loss of before exceptional items at Rs 1,080 crore.

Airtel had 283 million customers as on Dec 31, 2019 as compared to 279.4 million in the last quarter. Traffic grew 8 percent to 759 billion during the quarter as compared to 703 billion in the same quarter last year.