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Sify Consumer Business Declines 37%; Portals Profitable Post Cost Cutting

Sify has reported revenues of US $154.24 million for the year ended March 31, 2011, about 2.6% higher than the previous year’s revenues of US $ 150.28 million; at the same time, the company reported a decline in its consumer business, which dropped 37.7% year on year, to $11.79 million, from $18.92 million last year. Sify’s consumer services business comprises of an access through cybercafes, broadband services, retail Internet Telephony, and its worth noting that it accounts for less than 10% of the companys total revenues. Also keep in mind that Sify owns some key Indian keyword domain names – Samachar.com (news), Khoj.com (search), Khel.com (sports), Bawarchi.com (cooks), by virtue of the acquisition of IndiaWorld.

Sify CEO Raju Vegesna said on the companys conference call that its portals business has become profitable, but was sketchy with details “The way we have done is that we don’t go through the detail of the portal business. The overall business of the portal is profitable. We made it operationally cleaner from a cost point of view. Some of the initiatives we drove also increased the viewership of the portals.”

Despite companies like Google claiming that India has 100 million Internet users, Vegesna still feels that Internet penetration in India is still small, but growing. “Enterprise business is our key strategy, and the consumer consumer business has been scaled in a manner that it is scalable with growth in the market.” The company also intends to increase its CyberCafe rollout, as a means of expanding consumer reach, saying that “India is one of the biggest markets for cybercafes, and we’ve changed the way we approach the model.”

Sify hasn’t released operational specifics of its access business that it used to, but the company says that its broadband service is available in over 200 towns and cities and caters to more than 80,000 customers through 1400 franchisees, and that it has 1860 cybercafes across 200 towns.

According to its press release, it has launched Sify Radio in partnership with Radio City, and launched . In line with the industry trend, Sify Sports claims to have received its highest ever page views for the Cricket World Cup.

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