MTNL, the state-led telecom operator will lose its spot to Hathway Cable and Datacom as the private broadband service provider materialises its expansion plan. After surpassing MTNL, Hathway will gain the fourth spot in top broadband providers of India. Going by the telecom subscription data report for December compiled by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), MTNL and Hathway have tied with 0.78 million wired broadband customers each. At the same time, MTNL has been losing out on its subscribers which has also led to Hathway’s rise in ranks. To recall, back in September 2017, Hathway had surpassed Vodafone owned You Broadband to become the fifth largest broadband player in the country.
Hathway Sees Increase in Broadband Income
As per the data available on December 31,2018, the top five wired Broadband Service providers were BSNL with 9.17 million subscribers, Bharti Airtel with 2.27 million subscribers, Atria Convergence Technologies with 1.39 million subscribers, MTNL with 0.78 million subscribers and Hathway Cable & Datacom at 0.78 million subscribers. Also, what’s worth noting is that MTNL has reported the same number of subscribers in December as it had reported for November.
As per the financial stats put out by Hathway, the broadband and cable service provider registered a profit of Rs 6.5 crore as opposed to the loss of Rs 5.9 crore in the trailing quarter. Operating EBITDA declined 5% QoQ to Rs 51.3 crore compared to Rs 53.8 crore. The income from broadband subscription for Hathway went up by 3% to Rs 134.9 crore from Rs 130.6 crore. The total expenditure of the company soared by 9% and rested Rs 83.6 crore from Rs 76.8 crore.
In the concerning quarter, the broadband service provider made 15,000 Home passes thus raising the number of Home passes to 5.54 million. It added 15,000 subscribers QoQ basis taking the total subscriber base to 780,000. ARPU of the company went down to Rs 662 from Rs 672 which was the number a quarter ago. The ARPU for the newly added customers was slightly higher at Rs 700 excluding taxes.
Increase in Average Speed Better for Industry
The average speed for broadband consumption went up to 0.75 Mbps in December from 0.72 Mbps in November thus signalling a healthy long term trend from the wireline industry relevance perspective.
Speaking about the industry-wide statistics received from 308 operators in December 2018, as compared to 306 operators in the previous month, the broadband subscriber count went up from 511.90 million at the end of Nov-18 to 518.55 million at the end of Dec-18 translating to a monthly growth rate of 1.30%. The top five service providers constituting of Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd, Vodafone Idea, Bharti Airtel, BSNL and Tata Tele. Group made up for 98.57% of the market share.