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Vodafone Q3-FY14 Concall: India Still 2nd Largest in Data Traffic; On M&A Opportunities

vodafone-logo Our telecom operator earnings coverage is brought to you by OnMobile Global, India’s leading Mobile Value Added Services [VAS] company

There is very little information about India on Vodafone‘s earnings conference call for the quarter in which the telco registered 45.7 million total data connections and 5.2 million 3G connections in India. It had reported data revenues of £111 million and total revenues of £937 million for India. Here are some notes from Vodafone’s earnings conference call:

– India continues to be Vodafone’s second largest business in terms of data traffic. Data browsing revenues now represent 10% of Vodafone India’s service revenues, which the company had mentioned in its earnings results last month.

– Vodafone has rolled out our 3G sites more rapidly during the quarter and India’s 3G traffic now accounts for 16% of the total AMAP (Africa, Middle East and Asia Pacific), which is up 5 points year-on-year. In its earnings results, Vodafone India had mentioned that it had added around 2,200 3G sites during this quarter and has a total 33,000 3G sites. Overall, it has 136,000 2G & 3G sites for the quarter.

banner-8– It continues to witness less price discounting, which has helped to increase Vodafone India’s ARPU by 9.6%. The company’s pricing was up 1.5% quarter-over-quarter.

On M&A Opportunities: Responding to a question on whether the telco is witnessing more M&A opportunities in Europe or emerging markets, Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao says M&A opportunities depends on several things like existing circumstances and what’s available in the market. For instance, markets like India clearly needs to have consolidation while in Africa, operators are maybe looking to sell since they are not getting the expected returns but it is yet to be seen whether they sell at a reasonable price or not.

Last week, Vodafone CEO Marten Pieters had also stated plans to acquire assets of other telcos in India, including spectrum and fibre assets, in order to get a pan-India footprint for data services. While Pieters declined to comment on the speculated deal of Tatas looking to sell Tata Communications and Tata Teleservices to Vodafone, he added that every telecom operator will be looking to have at least 10 MHz in each market where data usage is growing.

On investments: Colao mentions that along with Europe, a lot of its investment has gone into emerging markets in the past few years and these investment typically pay out in longer term. For instance, some people were doubtful of its India investment being a good one and had also questioned this four years ago. However, now India’s EBITDA margins are higher than Europe and is reporting double digit growth.

ListenVodafone Q3-FY14 Earnings call | Transcript

Vodafone India Q3-FY14: 730MB 3G Data/Sub; Adds 3.2M Data Connections
Vodafone India Q3-FY14: Revenue Down To £937M; ARPU At Rs 193
India Is Vodafone’s 2nd Largest Country In Data Traffic; 3G Is 30% Of Data Traffic

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