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Vi won’t wait for other telcos to hike tariffs, but won’t say when it will do so

“We will not wait for anybody else to join” in hiking data tariffs, Vodafone Idea CEO Ravinder Takkar said, “but we will also raise prices at the right time. And the right time will be when the right time is. I can’t tell you exactly what it will be, partly because it will be a competitive issue as well,” he added. Takkar said that he was confident that there was investor interest in Vi, but declined to speculate on when exactly investments would be announced.

  • Not revealing YOU Broadband numbers: YOU Broadband was acquired by Vodafone a few years ago, but Vi will not disclose how many subscribers the fixed line broadband service has. “All that I can say is that I think in terms of our strategy of investment, that is not a priority area,” Takkar said, adding that the company would consider disclosing the numbers for the service in the future.
  • Phasing out 3G in 2022: “The direction which we are taking is that 3G is not required anymore. It has been continued only because some people have devices which can be used only on 3G and not on 4G,” Takkar said, adding that as and when the number of 3G devices in a geography becomes low, “market interventions” are carried out to discontinue the service. While the company said that it is targeting FY 2022 for closure of 3G sites, Takkar declined to say how many 3G sites are currently active.
  • Ready for 5G when others are: “We are well prepared for 5G rollout as and when the ecosystem is ready,” Takkar said. In response to an investor on what spectrum Vi would use for 5G, Takkar indicated that the company would likely go with spectrum it already owns, and said that 35MHz spectrum was too expensive (and not up for auction).

Financial snapshot — Q3FY21

  • Revenue: Rs 10,894.1 crore (up 0.95% QoQ, down 1.76% YoY)
  • Net Loss: Rs 4,532.1 crore (down 37% QoQ, down 29.6% YoY)
  • EBITDA: Rs 4,286.2 crore (up 3.2% QoQ, up 25.3% YoY)

Results and KPIs

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I cover the digital content ecosystem and telecom for MediaNama.

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