Bharti Airtel sees increase in Africa revenues as India records decline




Bharti Airtel has announced its audited consolidated financial results for the first quarter ended June 30, 2018.

During the quarter, Bharti Airtel acquired Telenor’s operations in India, meaning that financial and operational parameters of the combined entity now form part of the firm’s India results. The consolidated revenues for Q1’19 at Rs 20,080 crore de-grew 2.3% Y-o-Y (reported drop of 8.6%) on an underlying basis (viz. adjusted for India domestic and international termination rate reduction and divested operating units). Consolidated mobile data traffic at 2,236 billion MBs in the quarter has registered a robust Y-o-Y growth of 328%.

India revenues for Q1’19 at Rs 14,930 crore have declined by 7.0% Y-o-Y (declined 13.5% on reported) on an underlying basis as the mobile segment continues to be impacted by aggressive industry pricing and has witnessed Y-o-Y de-growth of 11.0%. The firm’s other subsidiaries in India have however witnessed healthy Y-o-Y growth (returning growths of 10.6% in Digital TV and 11.8% in Airtel Business on an underlying basis). Mobile data traffic has quadrupled to 2,151 billion MBs in the quarter as compared to 472 billion MBs in the corresponding quarter last year. Mobile broadband customers increased by 75.2% to 85.7 million from 48.9 million in the corresponding quarter last year.

In constant currency (1st Mar’18) terms, Africa revenues grew by 13.9% Y-o-Y led by strong growth in data and Airtel money transaction value. Mobile data traffic has grown by 75% to 78 billion MBs in the quarter as compared to 44 billion MBs in the same quarter last year. Data customers increased by 45.2% to 26.4 million from 18.2 million in the corresponding quarter last year. Active Airtel Money customer base increased to 11.8 million, boosting the total transaction value on Airtel Money platform by 43% to US $6.1 billion.

In a statement, Mr. Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO, India & South Asia,said: “The acquisition of Telenor’s India unit was completed during the quarter, and I am delighted to welcome all the Telenor customers into the Airtel family. Industry pricing continues to remain untenable. However, led by our successful bundles, content partnerships and handset upgrade programs, our mobile data traffic surged 355% on a YoY basis. Non-mobile portfolio also continues to witness healthy growth on back of investments in home passes and HD content. Aggressively expanding our 4G capacities and continuing to offer highest data speeds to customers remains a key priority for us, and towards this end, Q1’19 has seen our highest quarterly capex spends of Rs 7,887 Cr. Our investments have led to some opex headwinds in this quarter but we remain focused on structural cost containment through our ‘War on Waste’ program. With consolidation largely done, the secular opportunity of the Indian telecom market continues to excite us and we remain committed to offer best-in-class services to all consumers.”

In a statement, Mr. Raghunath Mandava, MD and CEO, Africa, said: “Airtel Africa’s Gross Revenue grew by 14% on a Y-o-Y basis. Data traffic grew by 75%, voice minutes increased by 44% and Airtel Money throughput grew by 43% on a Y-o-Y basis. Consequently, EBITDA margin has expanded by 7.8% Y-o-Y. Q1 EBITDA margin is 36.4%. With 4G services live across 9 countries and continuing up-gradation of capacities across the OPCOs, we remain best placed to capture the ever growing data market. We have rolled out ~1,000 broadband towers during the quarter. We continue our focus on profitable growth through superior customer offerings and expanding our Airtel money base – which now transacts more than US $24 billion on an annualized basis.”

Below is the summary of the results:




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