ICICI Securities on Wednesday said in its research note that it expects Bharti Airtel to post 3.3% mobile revenue growth on a quarterly basis. The firm in its preview of the second quarter earnings results said that it expects Vodafone Idea (VIL) to post 1.5% quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) mobile revenue growth. ICICI Securities said that “for a seasonally weak” second quarter, it expects operators to post mobile revenue growth due to “one additional day during the quarter, higher mobile broadband subscriber addition.” Crucially, the firm also highlighted that the “low base” set by the operators during the first quarter “due to severe lockdown” will “offset the seasonality led dip.”
ICICI Securities said that it expects the Airtel subscriber base to grow by four million in the second quarter of the current financial year. However, the firm said that the VIL subscriber base during the same period could dip by eight million.
“But, given rising aggression from VIL post the AGR verdict, it may start adding subs from Q3FY21 itself,” ICICI Securities said in its note.
The firm also said that the average revenue per user (ARPU) should be positive for the operators “due to one additional day, higher availability of recharges” and the growth in 4G subscriber additions. In terms of the data subscribers, ICICI Securities said that Airtel is expected to post five million subscribers additions and Vodafone Idea at three million additions.
ICICI Securities said that the overall Airtel revenues are “likely” to grow by 2% QoQ and 17% year-over-year (YoY) to Rs 181 billion with the growth aided by its mobile segment.
Similarly, it was said that revenues of VIL are also “likely” to increase 1.5% QoQ to Rs 108 billion.
“This is due to continued loss of subs (down 8mn), which should start growing from Q3FY21 itself,” ICICI Securities said in its note on VIL earnings for the second quarter. “ARPU is estimated to increase by 5% QoQ as most of the lost subs were in the low-ARPU bucket.”