Bharti Airtel on Wednesday reported 2.8% jump in net profit to Rs 1,290 crore for the March quarter despite over 25% rise in depreciation and spectrum amortisation expenses.
The Sunil Mittal-led company had reported a net profit of Rs 1,255 crore in the January-March period of 2014-15.
Total revenues of the company rose 8.4% to Rs 24,960 crore for the reported quarter as compared to Rs 23,016 crore last year.
The company said depreciation and amortisation expenses amounted to Rs 4,816.3 crore as compared to Rs 3,840.1 crore in the corresponding quarter last year, which reflects an increase of 25.4%, primarily led by incremental depreciation and higher spectrum amortisation expenses in India.
For the entire 2015-16, the company’s net profit stood at Rs 5,484 crore whereas total revenues were to the tune of Rs 96,532 crore.
The company also announced a buyback up to an aggregate amount not exceeding Rs 1,434 crore, at a price of Rs 400 per equity share, representing 0.90% of the total paid up equity share capital of the company.
The capital expenditure for the full year was Rs 20,591.9 crore, an increase of 10.3% when compared with the previous year.
The consolidated earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) at Rs 9,188 crore grew 14.1% Y-o-Y with EBITDA margin expanding by 1.8% to 36.8%, driven by India’s margin expansion.
The India revenues of the country’s largest telecom operator for the quarter, at Rs 18,328 crore, grew by 11.7% year-on-year, adjusted for the impact in reduction of termination rates.
Mobile data revenues at Rs 3,357 crore grew by 44.5% y-o-y in India, led by increase in the data customer base and traffic.
Mobile data revenues now contribute to 23.3% of mobile India revenues vis-à-vis 17.6% in the year-ago quarter. Data average revenue per user (ARPU) has moved up by Rs 21 to Rs 196 during the quarter, led by 31.0% increase in usage per customer.
“Solid execution has resulted in an acceleration of “Solid execution has resulted in an acceleration of revenue market share...y-o-y mobile data growth continues to lead, with traffic and revenues up 69.4 per cent and 44.5 per cent respectively. Voice volumes have also increased 10.8 per cent - the fastest growth in the last 18 quarters,” Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO, India & South Asia, Bharti Airtel said.
He added that with the proposed spectrum acquisitions from Videocon and Aircel, the company will be the only pan-India 2G/3G/4G operator and best placed in the industry to strengthen its leadership position.
For the full year, voice realisation per minute has decreased by 1.58 paise to 34.11 paise as compared to 35.69 paise last year.
Mobile data usage per customer for the full year witnessed an increase of 36.3% to 801 MBs per month as compared to 587 MBs in the previous year and data ARPU increased by 21.4% to Rs 194 during the year from Rs 160 in the previous year.
Its net loss from the African operations also narrowed down to USD 59 million during the reported quarter.
“After accounting for the finance costs and taxes, the net loss for the quarter was $59 million as compared to a loss of $183 million in the corresponding quarter last year,” Airtel said.
In constant currency terms, Africa revenues adjusted for the impact of divestment of tower assets grew by 5.9% y-o-y, the highest growth in last six quarters. Data revenues now contribute to 15.7% of overall Africa revenues vis-a-vis 11.5% in the corresponding quarter last year.
“Despite the quarter seasonality in the continent, data consumption and revenues have moved up 110.1% and 43.0% Y-o-Y respectively,” Christian de Faria, MD and CEO, Africa, Bharti Airtel, said.
The net debt of the company increased to Rs 83,888.3 crore as on March 31, 2016.
The Board has proposed a final dividend of Rs 1.36 per share (face value of Rs 5 per share) for the financial year ended March 31, 2016.