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Competitive pressures eat into Idea top line

25 Oct 2016

India’s third largest cellco by subscribers, Idea Cellular, has booked total revenue of INR93.002 billion (USD1.39 billion) for its Q2 2017, ended 30 September 2016, representing a decrease of 2.0% quarter-on-quarter. Idea attributed the dip to competitive pressure on its voice business, which reported a 5.3% decline in revenue, exacerbated by a seasonal slowdown. EBITDA for the period was INR28.401 billion, down from INR30.742 billion in its Q1 2017, whilst EBITDA margin also fell from 32.4% to 30.5%. Net profit for the period was INR43 million, down from INR4.971 billion in the preceding quarter, though that figure was bolstered by an INR3.623 billion dividend from its tower joint venture Indus Towers.

The cellco recorded 2.6 million net additions in its mobile user base, increasing the total to 178.8 million. Idea noted that it continued its aggressive data network rollout, adding 5,006 4G sites during the three-month period, bringing the total to 24,945 4G sites, covering 171 million Indians across 2,400 towns and 7,500 villages in ten services areas. The cellco also added 9,236 new sites to its 3G network, which reached 60,467 sites – covering a total of 377 million Indians. In part due to its network expansion efforts, the operator reported growth in its 3G and 4G data subscriber bases, which reached 27.630 million and 3.073 million respectively, up from 25.200 million and 1.800 million at end-June 2016.

India, Vi (Vodafone Idea Limited, VIL)

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