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Bharti Airtel records sixth straight income drop in 2017/18 second quarter

The telecom firm, embroiled in a tariff war with Reliance Jio, registered a steep 76.5 per cent fall in net income for the quarter at Rs 343 crore.

Published: 01st November 2017 02:40 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st November 2017 09:28 AM   |  A+A-

Bharti Airtel. (File photo | Reuters)

Reuters file image used for representational purpose only.

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Bharti Airtel recorded its sixth straight decline in earnings during the second quarter of 2017-18. The telecom firm, embroiled in a tariff war with Reliance Jio, registered a steep 76.5 per cent fall in net income for the quarter at Rs 343 crore. The figure had stood at Rs 1,461 crore for the same period of the previous year.

Warning that financial stresses in the sector are only likely to continue, Gopal Vittal, CEO, India and South Asia, Bharti Airtel said that these would be “further accentuated by the reduction in IUC (Interconnect Usage charges) rates in the next quarter.”

The quarter’s results are the lowest for the firm since the January-March quarter of 2013. Airtel’s total revenues across geographies fell 10.4 per cent year-on-year (Y-o-Y) to Rs 21,777 crore, its consolidated Ebitda Rs 8,004 crore declined 15.4 per cent and consolidated net debt has increased to Rs 91,480 crore from Rs 87,840 crore.

“India revenues for Q2’18 at Rs 16,728 crore have declined by 13.0 per centY-o-Y primarily led by mobile drop of 16.8 per cent Y-o-Y. Mobile market continues to experience value erosion and financial stress led by competitive pressures,” Airtel said.

The firm’s Africa market, however, did better than its Indian peers — with revenue rising 2.8 per cent on an underlying basis, while operating profit margins improved over 9 per cent year-on-year driven by “continuous cost control initiatives”.

Mobile data traffic also grew four-fold during the quarter in India, with mobile broadband customers rising by 33.6 per cent to 55.2 million.

Falling revenues, rising debt

The quarter’s results are the lowest for the firm since the January-March quarter of 2013. Airtel’s total revenues across geographies fell 10.4 per cent year-on-year to Rs 21,777 crore, its consolidated Ebitda Rs 8,004 crore declined 15.4 per cent and consolidated net debt has increased to Rs 91,480 crore from Rs 87,840 crore

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