Bharti Airtel Q3 net slumps 39%

Bharti Airtel shares fell 1.17% or Rs5.85 to Rs494.50 on a day the Sensex rose 0.51% or 178.47 points to 35,260.29

Bharti Airtel shares fell 1.17% or Rs5.85 to Rs494.50 on a day the Sensex rose 0.51% or 178.47 points to 35,260.29

Consolidated net debt of Airtel went up 0.3% sequentially to Rs 91,714 crore.

Consolidated revenue for the third quarter stood at Rs. 20,318.6 crore, an nearly 13% drop from Rs. 23,335.7 crore in October-December 2016 quarter.

"Airtel has witnessed a revenue growth of 5.3 per cent year-on-year with a higher net revenue growth of 8.8 per cent year-on-year". Monthly churn reported for Q3 2018 stood at 1.2 per cent (1.4 per cent reported in the previous quarter; 1.3 per cent in Q2 2017). The company's revenue, however, has gone up 5.3 per cent in Africa. It was a drop of 12.9 per cent.

The telco said that year-on-year de-growth primarily impacted by a mobile drop of 17.6%. Lower EBITDA along with rising spectrum costs and continued investments in India have resulted in deterioration of Return on Capital Employed (ROCE) to 4.9 percent from 7.1 percent in the corresponding quarter previous year.

The operating free cash flow during the quarter was at Rs 134.8 crore as compared to Rs 32.6 crore a quarter ago. Total India mobile subscribers increased by 2.9 per cent from the previous quarter to 29.0 crore, which is also 9.1 per cent growth y-o-y.

India's biggest mobile carrier Bharti Airtel Ltd posted a 39.3 percent drop in net profit in the third-quarter, after the country's telecoms regulator, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) ordered a sharp cut in mobile interconnection fees. It also reduced its ARPU by Rs 16.

The company said that mobile data traffic rose more than six-fold to 1,106 billion MBs in the quarter as compared with 172 billion MBs in the corresponding quarter a year ago.

Airtel India and South Asia MD and CEO Gopal Vittal said. "The recent announcement of the reduction in global termination rates will further accentuate this decline and benefit foreign operators with no commensurate benefit to customers", Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO, India & South Asia, said in a statement.

Mr. Vittal added the continued investments in data capacities, strategic partnerships with content and handset providers and focus on customer-friendly innovations like data rollover had led to the "healthy" addition of 8.1 million customers during the quarter.

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