In this new role, Mehrotra will be responsible for implementing Uninor’s mass market distribution approach, trade partnership model and cluster approach towards conducting and measuring its business in other Asian operations.
Telenor has also promoted Rajeev Sethi as Uninor’s Chief Marketing Officer from his current role as Uninor’s Circle Business Head – UP East circle. In this new role, Sethi will be responsible for Uninor’s marketing, new product development, customer lifecycle management and sales and distribution initiatives across the country.
Earlier (Feb 13): Telenor group has reported total India revenues of NOK 810 million (around Rs 7.96 billion) for the quarter ending December 31, 2012, a 13.5% decline from NOK 863 million (Rs 8.48 billion) in the previous quarter and a decline from NOK 936 million (Rs 9.2 billion) revenues in the same quarter last year. The company attributed this decline to the scaling down of its operations to 6 best performing circles in India.
It registered an EBITDA loss of NOK 327 million (Rs 3.21 billion), lower than the previous quarter loss of NOK 408 million (Rs 4 billion) and significantly lower than NOK 582 million (Rs 5.71 billion) in the same quarter last year. The operating loss stood at NOK 444 million (Rs 4.36 billion), a significant improvement from NOK 4.98 billion (Rs 48.93 billion) loss in the same quarter last year.
For the year ending 2012, Telenor group reported total revenues of NOK 3.72 billion (Rs 36.56 billion) from the India region, up 23.1% from NOK 3.02 billion (Rs 29.61 billion) revenues in 2011. The EBITDA loss stood at NOK 1.98 billion (Rs 19.41 billion) for the year while the operating profit stood at NOK 6.28 billion (Rs 61.57 billion).
Telenor mentioned that it has been able to breakeven in the UP West circle and expects the Gujarat circle to reach breakeven in January 2013. It also experienced a revenue growth of 3% sequentially in seven active circles.
The previous quarter saw Telenor partnering Lakshdeep Investments & Finance to create a new joint venture Telewings Communications. Telenor maintained operational control of the entity and was expected to own 74% of the joint venture, following all requisite government approvals. It had also mentioned that all assets of Unitech Wireless (Uninor) will be transferred to Telewings following necessary approvals, for seamless continuity of operations.
The joint venture had secured 24 blocks of spectrum in 6 circles for a total of Rs 4018.28 crore in the 2G spectrum auction that concluded in November 2012. Among the circles where it had secured spectrum include Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Maharashtra, UP East and UP West.
Decline in Subscriber Base
The company reported a decline of 2.2 million subscribers during the quarter. Telenor mentioned that this decline was due to scaling down of its operations along with implementation of government imposed subscriber identification regulations, which lead to reduced gross loss but also increased the quality of the subscriber base and reduced churn. The quarter also saw a clean-up of non-active customers which lead to a reduction in the number of SIMs in the Indian market.
The company currently has 23.6 million subscriptions in seven active circles which includes six circles where the company recently secured licenses and Mumbai where the company is awaiting a clarity on conditions for the new auction.
Telenor noted that it incurred a expense of NOK 117 million (Rs 1.15 billion) which includes the exit costs for two circles West Bengal and Kolkata where the company was not able to secure spectrum.
ARPU: The company’s ARPU in India stood at Rs 95, up from Rs 92 in the previous quarter but down from Rs 104 in Q4-2011. The churn rate however improved to 12% from 13% in the previous quarter.
Overall, Telenor group has reported a Profit after tax of NOK 3.19 billion (around Rs 31.3 billion) for the quarter ending December 30, 2012, a decline from NOK 3.64 billion (around Rs 35.77 billion) in the previous quarter but a significant increase from NOK 2.71 billion (Rs 26.63 billion) loss in the same quarter last year. The total revenue stood at NOK 26 billion (Rs 255.47 billion), up from NOK 25.25 billion (Rs 248.16 billion) revenues in the previous quarter and NOK 25.4 billion (Rs 249.64 billion) revenues in the same quarter last year.
For the year ending 2012, Telenor group posted a profit after tax of NOK 9.49 billion (Rs 93.27 billion), up from NOK 7.16 billion (Rs 70.2 billion) profits in the year 2011. The total revenue stood at NOK 101.72 billion (Rs 999.72 billion) for the year, up 3.3% from NOK 98.5 billion (Rs 968.1 billion) revenue in the year 2011.
Other Significant Highlights
- Telenor recorded a net tax income of NOK 2.7 billion (Rs 26.53 billion) for the quarter due to the recognition of a deferred tax asset of around NOK 2.5 billion (Rs 24.57 billion) for provision of losses against Uninor, as a result of the expected business transfer from this company to Telewings and recognition of deferred tax asset of NOK 1 billion (Rs 9.82 billion) for unused tax losses in Telenor Pakistan.
- As of 31 December 2012, Uninor had NOK 1.0 billion (Rs 9.82 billion) in bank guarantees from the State Bank of India (SBI), with counter guarantee from Telenor ASA. In addition to this, Uninor also had NOK 0.9 billion (Rs 8.84 billion) in bank guarantees from ING Vysya Bank to replace the guarantees from SBI. Telenor mentioned that more than 99% of SBI’s bank guarantees was cancelled in January 2013, due to which it has been let off by SBI from the liability under the counter guarantee.
- Telenor Talks About Indian Operations, Future Plans
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