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Uninor Reports NOK 1132 Million EBITDA Loss For Q2; 60% Subs Opt For Dynamic Pricing

60% of its subscribers have opted for the dynamic price plan, Telenor CEO & President Jon Fredrik Baksaas said on an earnings conference call held in Norway today. “We’re able to deliver it because our network is probably the most modern. Throughout the the day, we can pinpoint periods throughout the rates, to offer special rates.” Uninor execs pointed out the prevalent multi-SIM usage pattern across India, and said that they’re going to use the dynamic price plan to build loyalty, and become the primary SIM in use. The technology allows the company to send an SMS to opt-in consumers, offering special rates for an hour, thus also allowing Uninor to improve network utilization, and “this has a direct effect on ARPU.”

Uninor reported revenues of NOK 103 million (approximately र 78 crore) for the quarter ended June 30th 2010, and an EBITDA loss of NOK 1132 (र 854 crore) on account of network operation and sales and marketing costs, and an operating loss of NOK 1323 (र 1002 crore). During the quarter, Uninor also announced the resignation of Stein-Erik Vellan as MD; Vellan was spearheaded the rollout of operations for Uninor has moved to another position within Telenor,and Sigve Brekke, Head of Telenor Asia Region was appointed MD, pending regulatory and statutory approvals in India. This effectively marks a change for Uninor, from being in startup mode to operational. Uninor had begin offering services in December 2009. Telenor owns 67.25% in Uninor, while the Unitech Group owns 32.75%.

Allocation of CAPEX?

Uninor has 3.873 million subscriptions, across 13 circles. The Uninor management said that they currently have around 30% coverage in the circles where services have been launched, so capital expenditure should be expected, in order to build capacity in those circles. They’ve also launched services in 5 new circles at the end of the quarter (Mumbai, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Kolkata, West Bengal), which resulted in a CAPEX of NOK 364 million (र 244 crore). Uninor had around 21,500 sites end of Q2-10.

Full Year Guidance

For the full year (2010) Uninor expects a CAPEX of NOK 2-2.5 billion and an EBITDA loss of NOK 4.5-5 Bn. The company expects to be profitable within three years of operation

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Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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