NEW DELHI: Telecom major Bharti Airtel’s financial results for the quarter ended December 31 only reinforce the sharp decline in profitability that Indian telecom majors (excluding Reliance Jio) have recorded over the past few quarters. While its overseas operations in Africa continued to grow at healthy rates, its India business has recorded a loss (before exceptional items) of Rs 971.9 crore compared to a net income of Rs 373.5 crore a year ago.
Driven down by poor earnings in the Indian market, consolidated net income fell 72 per cent during the period at Rs 86 crore against Rs 306 crore in the corresponding period of the previous year.
In fact, Airtel clawed into profit during the quarter primarily due to an accounting gain of Rs 1,017 crore from structural changes with respect to Airtel Payments Bank.
The intense competition playing out in the telecom market in India, with price wars resulting in diving margins coupled with large-scale investment needs, has seen overall revenue from its India business fall by 2.3 per cent year-on-year to Rs 14,768 crore on an underlying basis. Mobile business revenue, specifically, saw a 4 per cent contraction.
The company’s consolidated revenue for the quarter stood at Rs 20,519 crore. The saving grace is the steady growth in its Africa business, with Airtel Africa revenues growing 11.2 per cent to Rs 5,903.5 crore due to strong growth in data and Airtel money transactions. Airtel’s Africa unit also saw a 40 per cent rise in net income at Rs 551.8 crore.
Airtel’s problems are not confined to low tariffs and margins, but extend to its customer base. While its global base grew by 2.4 per cent, this was due to net additions in Africa and other markets. India saw a 2 per cent decline in the number of subscribers, with continuing user migration into competitors, primarily Reliance Jio.
Dena Bank narrows loss as provisions fall
New Delhi: State-owned Dena Bank on Thursday reported narrowing of net loss in December quarter of the current financial year to I178.47 crore as provisioning for bad loans declined. The bank had posted a net loss of I380 crore during the same period in FY 2017-18. Total income of the bank also came down to I2,293 crore in Q3FY19 against I2,476 crore in Q3FY18, Dena Bank said in a regulatory filing. Asset quality improved with net NPAs falling to 10.44 per cent of total advances.
Indiabulls Housing Finance net falls 14 per cent
New Delhi: Indiabulls Housing Finance on Thursday reported a 13.72 per cent fall in consolidated net profit at I985.51 crore for the third quarter of FY 2018-19, against I1,142.32 crore in the same quarter last year. Total income grew 7.20 per cent to I4,480.21 crore during Q3FY19 from I4,179.01 crore in Q3FY18. The company said that during Q3FY18, it had sold approximately one-third of its stake in OakNorth Holdings for I767.78 crore and recorded a one-time gain on sale of investments of I542.44 crore.