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Q3FY19: Vodafone-Idea reports losses of Rs 5,005 Cr and 35M subscribers

Vodafone Idea reported consolidated operational revenues of Rs 11,747 crore in the second reported quarter after the merger of Vodafone India Ltd and Idea Cellular Services last year. The entity posted losses after tax of Rs 5,005 crore, up from loss of Rs 4,951 crore in the preceding quarter. Total expenses increased to Rs 18,226 crore, from Rs 12,374 crore in the preceding quarter.

Vodafone India Ltd merged into Idea Cellular Services in August 2018 to create India’s largest mobile phone company with the largest number of subscribers and revenue.

The company’s board has approved rights issue of up to Rs 25,000 crore, Vodafone Group and Aditya Birla Group will contribute up to Rs 11,000 crore and Rs 7,250 crore respectively.

Metrics

  • The telco lost 35.1 million subscribers this quarter, and now has 387.2 million subscribers, as compared to 422.3 million subscribers in the preceding quarter
  • 4G subscriber base was 75.3 million, up by 9.5 million over last quarter owing to increased 4G coverage
  • ARPU stood at Rs 89, higher by 1.5% over the last quarter
  • Data volume of 2,705 billion MBs, up by 11.5% over last quarter
  • Average monthly data usage per subscriber was 6.2GB, up from 5.6 GB last quarter
  • Total minutes on the network fell by 2.6% due to introduction of service validity vouchers
  • Average minutes per user was 580 mins, compared to 568 mins last quarter
  • Broadband (3G+4G) population coverage was 68.8%
  • Total data subscribers were 146.3 million, up from 140.1 million last quarter

Financials

  • EBITDA was Rs 1,140 crore, an increase of 16.3% over the last quarter, driven by a reduction in operating expenses
  • Operating expenses were down by Rs 750 crore this quarter, “due to realization of merger synergies”
  • Cash & Cash equivalents stood at Rs 8,904 crore, down from Rs 13,553 crore last quarter
  • Net Debt stood at Rs 114,759 crore, up from 112,506 crore

Payments Bank: Aditya Birla Payments Bank launched in February 2018 with pilots in Gujarat and Maharashtra. Vodafone India Ltd has a 49% investment in the payments bank, and operates a prepaid payment instrument business subsidiary Vodafone M-Pesa Ltd. RBI regulations mandate that the same promoter group cannot operate a payments bank in one entity and a PPI business in another. RBI has thus allowed VMPL to continue business until March 31, 2019, provided that it cannot onboard new customers and balance of existing customers cannot be increased.

Download: Financials | Quarterly report

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