Government owned telco MTNL added a total of 195,128 cellular connections in the quarter ended December 2009. Its total mobile base was at 4.56 million. The operator offers Dolphin (GSM), Garuda (CDMA) and Jadoo (3G) wireless connections as well as IPTV, dial-up, broadband and Bol Anmol (VoIP) services in 2 cities – Delhi and Mumbai. It also continues to offer landlines (wirelines), but disconnections have increased alarmingly over the past few years with rising mobile teledensity, which was at 122% in Mumbai in December 2009, according to a TTML presentation. Tata Teleservices Maharashtra Ltd serves Maharashta & Goa circles. If you go by TTML’s figures, apparently MTNL only has 2 percent of the wireless market share in Mumbai!
MTNL posted a net loss of Rs. 8.95 billion compared to a net profit of Rs. 530.98 million in the corresponding quarter in 2008. Its net sales have fallen 18.8 percent year on year and it spend Rs. 847.42 million on license fees and spectrum in the quarter ended December 2009. Earnings Per Share has crashed to -Rs. 13.91 from the Re.0.85 recorded in the December 2008 quarter.
MTNL’s staff expenses have soared in the quarter on account of a 4% increase in Dearness Relief for retirement benefits provided, compared with the earlier 1.5% in December 2008 quarter and 0.75 % in the July 2009 quarter. It has reduced its administrative expenses year on year however.
Mobile Revenues Down 22% YoY
MTNL’s wireless segment EBITDA has taken a 70.6 percent fall to Rs. 92.11 million. Revenue from cellular services has fallen 22 percent year on year due to the crash in tariffs this quarter. Airtel’s revenues, were down sequentially and grew 1.44 percent year on year while Idea Cellular reported both a quarter on quarter and year on year rise in revenues despite its average realisations being hit by the pay per second tariff launches. Tata Teleservices Maharashtra Ltd also witnessed a quarter on quarter revenue growth of 10 percent.
Landline Revenues Down 24.8% YoY
The company’s landline segment has witnessed a 24.8 percent fall year on year as expected to Rs. 7.4 billion, and its EBITDA is at a new bottom at a negative Rs. 9.49 billion compared to Rs. 251.21 billion in the December 2008 quarter.
Added 32,293 Broadband Connections
In the quarter, MTNL announced a new broadband plan for Rs 49 per month. It added 32,293 broadband customers in the quarter and it had 7.68 connections as of end of December 2009. It also introduced 20 MBps broadband in Mumbai and shortlisted UK based Virgin Mobile for managing its 3G operations ‘Jadoo’ on a franchisee model.