India’s private telecom operator Vodafone Idea has witnessed a downfall in the growth rate of its 4G subscriber base. However, the company doesn’t really seem to be concerned about the slowing subscriber growth as the Managing Director of the Vodafone Idea Ravinder Takkar thinks that the reason behind some of the subscribers leaving the service is because of the recent tariff hikes and SIM consolidation. To recall Vodafone Idea or Vi had opted for tariff hikes along with other telcos back in November of 2021.
The Current Scenario
According to a report from ET Telecom, Ravinder Takkar was addressing an investor call after the company’s fiscal third-quarter earnings. He stated that there are no concerns regarding the 4G customer addition pace and the tariff hikes imposed in November along with SIM consolidation has resulted in a drop in the number of subscribers. It is to be noted that there was a 5.8 million downfall in Vi’s paying customer base in December end the quarter.
The telco as of now has about 247.2 million customer base and has also witnessed a 0.8 million growth in its 4G subscriber base. However, in sequential comparison with the July-September quarter, there has been a decline of 0.9 million in telco’s data subscribers during the December end quarter. As mentioned above, Vi had implemented tariff hikes back in November and the second consecutive quarter of revenue growth can be credited to multiple tariff mediations made in the last few months. Although there has been a falloff in the overall subscriber base due to the implantation of new tariff plans.
According to a tech analyst, the MD of Vi said during the call that merging of the SIM is going to influence the telco for a few more quarters. He added that the withdrawal of added benefits such as weekend rollovers and additional data are the reasons behind a drop in data usage. However, he also said that the 4G subscriber base of Vi has remained resilient all thanks to the superior data and voice experience offered by Vi GIGAnet.
Vi happens to be India’s only loss-making telecom operator and the net loss for the fiscal third quarter of the telco has expanded to Rs 7234.1 crore from Rs 7,144.6 crore in the last three months. The increase in the net losses can be credited to the company’s operating and interest expenses.