Vodafone Idea (Vi) on Thursday reported its second quarter financial results for the period ended September 30, 2020 with the company registering an 1.2% quarter on quarter (QoQ) increase in its revenues. The third largest wireless operator in India said that its second quarter revenues hit Rs 107.9 billion as the “impact” of the COVID-19 lockdown “gradually started to ease.” The company citing Ookla said that it is “now the fastest 4G network in India” and that it performed a “significant network capacity expansion supported by spectrum refarming and TDD rollout.”
Vi Registers an Improvement in APRU
Vodafone Idea said that its subscriber base declined to 271.8 million in its second quarter of the current financial year from 279.8 million in the previous quarter. However, the company highlighted that its 4G subscriber base touched 106.1 million in its second quarter in the current financial year as compared to 104.6 million in the previous quarter.
“As we reach the end of our integration journey, we have become the fastest and most consistent 4G network of India, as validated by Ookla, a testimony to our superior and improved 4G GIGAnet network covering 1 billion Indians,” Ravinder Takkar, CEO of Vodafone Idea, said in the release.
Vodafone Idea said that the average revenue per user (ARPU) for its second quarter in the current financial year “improved” to Rs 119 as compared to Rs 114 in the previous quarter. In the same period in the previous year, the operator registered an ARPU of Rs 107.
“We are executing on our strategy and our cost optimization exercise has already started to yield incremental savings,” Takkar said in the release. “We have also initiated a fund raising exercise to support our strategic intent. Further, we continue to interact with the government seeking long term solutions to the critical challenges, which the industry faces.”
Vi Increases Network Sites Even as Consumption Falls
The operator highlighted that it had continued to invest in 4G to enhance its coverage and capacity with Vodafone Idea adding around 10,000 4G sites by reframing its 2G and 3G spectrum. Further, the company said that it had “made progress in implementing” Long-Term Evolution (LTE) 900 in its “select locations” during its second quarter. Vodafone Idea said that its overall broadband site count stood at 457,386 at the end of its second quarter as compared to 446,131 sites in its previous quarter.
“These network investment initiatives have delivered a significant capacity uplift and enabled us to offer superior customer experience,” the operator said in its release. “Our relentless pursuit to drive network improvement, through integration and incremental network investments post-merger, are clearly visible through our improved rankings in various third party reports.”
However, Vodafone Idea highlighted that its data volumes declined by 4% QoQ “as data usage normalised compared to the significantly higher volumes witnessed during the early months of lockdown.” The operator in its quarterly report highlighted that the average data consumed by its users declined to 11,978MB (11.9GB) in its second quarter. In the previous quarter, Vodafone Idea said that the average data consumed by its users touched 13,124MB (13.1GB).
Similarly, Vodafone Idea said that the total minutes on its network declined by 4% during the quarter. The operator in its quarterly report highlighted that average minutes consumed by its users declined to 673 minutes in its second quarter as compared to 678 minutes in the previous quarter.