Bharti Airtel has reported solid growth for the quarter ended 30 June 2014, fuelled by a strong performance in its domestic market and continued steady expansion across its African footprint. The group’s total revenue increased by 13% year-on-year to INR229.616 billion (USD3.814 billion), whilst EBITDA expanded by 18% to INR77.2 billion and EBITDA margin improved by 1.3 percentage points to 33.6%. Net profits for the quarter were INR11.085 billion, compared to INR6.889 billion twelve months earlier.
Airtel’s Indian market booked revenues of INR127.525 billion, up 10% y-o-y, as the firm saw improvements across the sector. Total mobile subscriptions grew by 10% to 209.411 million, whilst overall average revenue per user (ARPU) edged up slightly to INR202 from INR200 in the year-ago period. Airtel continued to see rapid expansion in the mobile data space, more than doubling its 3G subscriber base to 12.535 million from 6.238 million at end-June 2013, whilst the company’s total data user base grew by 52% to 39.32 million over the same period. Average data use and data ARPU grew by 26% and 8% respectively to 495MB and INR139. Data services now represent 12.4% of the company’s mobile service revenues, compared to 11.5% at end-March 2014 and 8.2% at end-June 2013. Growth was more muted in the voice market, and although traffic on Airtel’s network increased by 5% to 270.827 billion minutes, voice ARPU was flat at INR166 (unchanged y-o-y) and usage per customer dipped by 4% to 435 minutes due to growing number of low-usage subscribers on Airtel’s network.
Across its 17 African markets revenues expanded by 17% y-o-y to INR69.685 billion, driven by an 8% increase in total subscriptions and a 52% increase in data customers. Airtel booked 69.086 million users throughout its African divisions, up from 64.203 million a year earlier but down from 69.443 million at 31 March 2014. Data customers, meanwhile, increased from 15.544 million to 23.65 million. ARPU increased by 2% y-o-y, as an increase in data ARPU from USD1.3 to USD1.5 offset a slight decline in voice ARPU.