AGR fallout: Airtel slips into Rs 23,045 cr Q2 net loss | WeForNews | Latest News, Blogs AGR fallout: Airtel slips into Rs 23,045 cr Q2 net loss – WeForNews | Latest News, Blogs
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AGR fallout: Airtel slips into Rs 23,045 cr Q2 net loss

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New Delhi, Nov 14 : Sunil Mittal-owned Bharti Airtel on Thurday posted a mammoth net loss of Rs 23,045 crore in its July-September quarter as against loss of Rs 2,866 crore in Q1 on heavy provisioning towards the DoT’s AGR amount which has to be paid in three months as per the Supreme Court order.

The Gurugram-based operator’s net loss exceeded its consolidated revenue from operations which grew 4.9 per cent year on year to Rs 21,131 crore in the September quarter.

Airtel’s results come three weeks after the apex court upheld the government’s broader definition of revenue, on which it calculates levies on telecom operators, dealing a Rs 92,000 crore blow to the telecom industry, which is already burdened with falling tariffs and mounting debt.

“On October 24, 2019, the Supreme Court of India delivered a judgement in relation to a long outstanding industry-wide case upholding the view considered by Department of Telecommunications in respect of the definition of Adjusted Gross Revenue This Court Judgement has significant financial implications on the Company. The Court has allowed a period of three months to the affected parties to pay amounts due to DoT,” the company said.

Airtel said the company is hopeful of relief but in the absence of the same, has provided for an additional amount aggregating Rs 28,450 crore as a charge for the quarter comprising principal of Rs 6,164 crore, interest of Rs 12,219 crore, penalty of Rs 3,760 crore, and interest on penalty of Rs 6,307 crore with respect to the license fee as estimated based on the court judgement and spectrum usage charges (SUC) as estimated based on the definition of AGR.

Thus the liabilities/provisions as at September 30, 2019 aggregate Rs 34,260 crore (comprising principal of Rs 8,747 crore, interest of Rs 15,446 crore, penalty of Rs 3,760 crore and interest on penalty of Rs 6,307 crore).

In a statement, Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO, India & South Asia, said: “Despite being a seasonally weak quarter, we witnessed positive revenue growth in Q2 on the back of various initiatives aimed at providing superior differential services through our Thanks platform. We continue to witness strong data traffic growth of 81 per cent YoY and added 8 mn 4G customers on our network during the quarter. We remain committed to strengthening our network and providing a superior experience to our customers.

“Before exceptional items, the net loss stood at Rs 1,123 crore. The company’s India revenues increased by 3 per cent on year-on-year basis to Rs 15,361 crore. On the AGR verdict of the Supreme Court, we continue to engage with the government and are evaluating various options available to us. We are hopeful that the government will take a considerate view in this matter given the fragile state of the industry,” he said.

Mobile data traffic on the network grew to 4,661 PBs in the quarter and growth of 81 per cent YoY. Consolidated EBITDA was at Rs 8,936 crore while onsolidated EBITDA margin is at 42.3 per cent, up 10.8 per cent YoY. India revenues for Q2’20 at Rs 15,361 crore have increased by 5.7 per cent YoY (reported increase of 3.0 per cent) on an underlying basis.

Mobile revenues have witnessed a YoY growth of 7.1 per cent. Mobile data traffic has nearly doubled to 4,497 PBs in the quarter as compared to 2,478 PBs in the corresponding quarter last year. Mobile 4G data customers increased by 56.9 per cent to 103.1 mn from 65.7 mn in the corresponding quarter last year.

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Hyundai bets on diesel models, launches Tucson SUV

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Chennai, July 14 : The second largest car maker in India Hyundai Motor India Ltd while continuing to bet on diesel powered vehicles is also looking at faster demand recovery from tier 2/3 cities, said a senior official on Tuesday.

Hyundai Motor also launched its new premium sports utility vehicle (SUV) Tucson for the Indian market.

Speaking to reporters, Tarun Garg, Director (Sales, Marketing and Service) said the timing of Tucson’s launch is right as there are over five lakh Creta buyers in the country who are looking for an upgrade to a premium SUV.

The new Tucson’s starting price is about Rs 22 lakh.

“With over 6.5 million customers worldwide, Tucson is one of the best-selling SUV’s across the world,” S.S. Kim, Managing Director and CEO told reporters.

He said the model was unveiled at the Auto Expo 2020.

Garg said the booking for diesel engine models are growing and the demand is across the country and more so from tier 2/3 cities.

He said when the fuel prices go up, buyers will look at fuel economy and diesel engines are fuel efficient.

According to Garg, Hyundai Motor has got over 45,000 bookings for its SUV Creta model and 56 per cent of that are for diesel engine variant.

Similarly, one third of the booking for Venue and Verna are for diesel models, Garg said.

“SUV lovers want much more than the fuel economy which diesel vehicles offer. It appears demand will stablilise at this level. There is also good demand for petrol models,” Garg added.

Queried about the pay cuts implemented by various companies and its impact on buyers scaling down their model preference Garg said he is not seeing any such trend.

According to him, buyers prefer to come to the showroom to take delivery of new cars even though Hyundai Motor offers to deliver the car at their door step.

Garg said it is not possible to predict the likely sales for 2020 as some states have Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

He said the company is watching the market behaviour on a monthly basis.

Garg said during June 2020, the company has reached 75 per cent of June 2019 demand figures, In July 2020 the car maker plans to touch 90 per cent of July 2019 levels.

On the availability of components as the company is planning to start third shift in its plant Garg said the localisation levels are very high and the dependence on components from China is very low.

According to Garg the company’s supply chain is ready to meet the demand for increased components as third shift production is soon to start.

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No lay-offs by Wipro amid crorona crisis, no such plan

The Bengaluru-headquartered IT behemoth employs more than 1.75 lakh people in several countries across the globe.

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Azim Premji Wipro

Bengaluru, July 13 : Global software major Wipro has not laid off any employee during the Covid-19 pandemic nor has any such plan at the moment, a top company official said on Monday.

“I just want to give comfort and say this categorically that we have not laid off a single employee as the pandemic unfolded,” Wipro Chairman Rishad Premji said at the company”s 74th annual general meeting (AGM) held virtually.

“At the moment, we have no plans to lay off anybody at the company,” he said, replying to a female shareholder.

“We are trying to drive cost deductions through various other means operationally and otherwise,” said Premji.

The Bengaluru-headquartered IT behemoth employs more than 1.75 lakh people in several countries across the globe.

–IANS

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Google to invest Rs 75,000 crore to boost digitisation in India

The investment will focus on four areas important to India’s digitisation– first enabling affordable access to information to every Indian in their own language.

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New Delhi, July 13 : Google CEO Sundar Pichai on Monday announced a Google for India digitisation fund through which, the company will invest Rs 75,000 crore or approximately $10 billion over the next five to seven years to help India go digital.

“We will do this through a mix of equity investment, partnerships and an operational infrastructure ecosystem in India. This is a reflection of our confidence in the future of India and its digital economy,” Pichai said during the Google for India virtual conference.

The investment will focus on four areas important to India’s digitisation– first enabling affordable access to information to every Indian in their own language.

“Second, building new products and services that are deeply relevant to India”s unique needs. Third, empowering businesses to continue or embark on digital transformation. And fourth, leveraging technology and Artificial Intelligence for social good in areas like health, agriculture and education,” the Google CEO said.

India’s Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad were also present during the conference.

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