Bharti Airtel suffered another quarter of falling profit and revenue in its fiscal Q2, led by a double-digit drop in sales and a sequential decline in subscribers in India.
Net profit for the quarter ending 30 September dropped 65.4 per cent year-on-year to INR1.19 billion ($16.3 million), with total revenue down 6.2 per cent to INR204 billion.
Revenue from Indian operations declined 10.6 per cent to INR149 billion, which the operator in a statement said was due to “continued ARPU down-trading impacted by competitive pricing pressures”.
Gopal Vittal, CEO for India and South Asia, said: “Led by our focus on quality customers through simplified pricing and content partnerships, the ARPU decline moderated in this quarter.”
Airtel’s subscriber base in India increased 14.4 per cent year-on-year to nearly 330 million in its fiscal Q2, albeit the figure was 6.6 million down on a peak at end-June.
Vittal said it remains committed to investing to enhance capacity and deployed more than 27,000 broadband sites during the quarter: mobile data volume was up 239 per cent year-on-year.
Revenue, sub gains
In Africa, revenue rose 10.9 per cent year-on-year to $824 million.
Raghunath Mandava, MD and CEO of Airtel Africa, said: “We have stepped up our capex spends during the quarter to build a formidable LTE network. This positions us well to expand our profitable growth journey by enhancing customer experience with best-in-class network and products.”
He said Airtel Money throughput grew 31 per cent on a year-on-year to $6.3 billion, as the active customer base for the service increased to 12.9 million.
Mobile subs rose 14.9 per cent year-on-year to 94.1 million at end September. Data customers increased 32 per cent to 27.1 million.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back