Reliance Jio Infocomms net profit rose nearly 20 % from the preceeding quarter, its third straight quarter in the black, helped by strong user additions and increased data usage.
For the fiscal first quarter, the Mukesh Ambani-owned company, which has upended the market since its entry in September 2016 first with free voice and data and now much cheaper mobile internet services, has posted a net profit of Rs 612 crore compared with Rs 510 crore in the January-March quarter.
Operating revenue rose 13.8% sequentially to Rs 8,109 crore.
Indias fourth largest telco by user base started reporting results from the three-month period ended September of last fiscal , when it posted a loss of Rs271 crore. In comparison, rival Bharti Airtel , clocked a net profit at Rs 97.30 crore for quarter ended June, despite an on year drop of 73.51% , reeling under the impact of pricing aggression, higher tariff costs and full quarter impact of cut in termination rates.
Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBIDTA) amounted to Rs 3,147 crore while the ebitda margin was 38.8%.
“We doubled our customer base and most user metrics in the last 12 months. 215 million customers within 22 months of start is a record that no technology company has been able to achieve anywhere in the world,” said chairman Mukesh Ambani. He added that fibre to home (FTTH) and enterprise services will strengthen Jios leadership as a digital service provier. “The continued strength in financial results of Jio despite competitive intensity reinforces the customer uptake of its services and its strong operating leverage. Jio is committed to offering most value to all of its stakeholders,” the chairman added.
The new telecom entrants average revenue per user (ARPU)—a key performance parameter—fell to Rs 134.5 from Rs 137 in the previous quarter.
Jios performance came a day after market leader Bharti Airtels India business, meanwhile, posted a loss of Rs 940.4 crore, before exceptional items, hurt by cuts in international termination rates interconnection usage charges, besides the ongoing price war. The Sunil Mittal owned telco clocked in an ARPU of Rs 105 and revenue from India operations, which make up for nearly 75% of the total, declined 13.5% to Rs 14,930 crore.
The other incumbents too reeled under tariff wars. Vodafone Indias service revenue fell 31% in the first quarter while Idea Cellulars losses are expected to mount . Idea Cellular will report its first quarter results on July 30. Indias No 2 and 3 operators , received the final nod of approval from telecom department , paving the way for creating the largest mobile carrier in India.