No 5G rollout unless funding in place, says VIL

On payment to vendors, it said the Board approved issuance of Optionally Convertible Debentures amounting to Rs 1,600 crore to American Tower Corporation India.
No 5G rollout unless funding in place, says VIL

NEW DELHI: Telecom operator Vodafone Idea (VIL) is not going to launch a 5G network until it has funding in place, and it will launch the services in select cities.The company, in its earning call, said that it would expedite 5G services in only those geographies, which matter the most in the context of 5G. “We are a little late compared to our competitors. As soon as funding is in place, we will expedite our rollout to have a presence in the geographies, which matter, particularly in the context of 5G,” said Chief Executive Officer Akshaya Moondra.

However, Moondra is of the view 5G technology hasn’t changed user experiences. “While it shows high speeds on speed meters, there is no difference in terms of usage. If you just get to see your experience that is not very different (from 4G),” added Moondra.VIL, India’s third-largest firm hasn’t spelled any plans for 5G deployment, while its competitors Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel have actively been rolling out 5G services.

Moondra advocated for tariff hike and said the current level of tariffs will not enable anybody to recover the cost. Thus, the current structure of pricing needs to evolve over a period of time in some form.  He said tariff hike required more at the unlimited plan as the users must pay more for using more. On the issue of fundraising, it is confident to get funds after the government agreed to convert its interest dues into equity. “We shared our business plan with the bank. We have started engaging with them and the discussions are progressing,” added Moondra.

On payment to vendors, it said the Board approved issuance of Optionally Convertible Debentures amounting to Rs 1,600 crore to American Tower Corporation India. The telco is in discussion with the government for longer payment tenure for its outstanding dues from licence fees for the third quarter FY23. “We made a partial payment. We are engaged with DoT (Department of Telecommunication) and proposed a plan to allow the firm slightly delayed payment,” said CEO of VIL.

VIL rivals Jio, Airtel rolling out 5G services

The company, in its earning call, said that it would expedite 5G services in only those geographies, which matter the most in the context of 5G. VIL, India’s third-largest firm hasn’t spelled any plans for 5G deployment, while its competitors Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel have actively been rolling out 5G services

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