Indian cellco Vodafone Idea (Vi) has booked gross revenues of INR108.9 billion (USD1.5 billion) for the three months to end-December 2020, down from INR110.9 billion in the year-ago period, but representing an increase of 1.0% quarter-on-quarter. EBITDA, meanwhile, grew by 25.0% year-on-year to INR42.9 billion with an EBITDA margin of 39.3% compared to 30.8% in the quarter to end-December 2019; Vi attributed the improvement to incremental opex saving and cost optimisation initiatives. Net loss for the period narrowed to INR45.4 billion, from INR64 million y-o-y and INR72.0 billion q-o-q.
Vi counted a total of 269.8 million mobile subscribers at end-December 2020, down from 271.8 million three months earlier and 304.0 million at the end of December 2019. 4G subscriptions, however, were up by 3.4% q-o-q and 5.3% y-o-y to 109.7 million and the improvement to its 4G user base helped drive ARPU to INR121, compared to INR109 a year earlier.
Commenting on the results, CEO Ravinder Takkar was quoted as saying: ‘In Q3FY21, we improved subscriber retention and operating performance, supported by Vi GIGAnet, which remains the fastest 4G network in India, as per Ookla as well the network with highest rated voice quality as per TRAI – a testimony to our superior network. We remain focused on executing our strategy, and our cost optimization plan remains on track to deliver the targeted savings. The board has approved funds raising to support our strategic intent and we are in active discussions with potential investors.’