Tower sales boosts Idea's 2Q net

Buoyant on a one-time gain, Idea Cellular posted a quarterly net profit of Rs256.5 crore on a consolidated basis for the quarter ended 30 June, compared with a net loss of Rs814.9 crore recorded during the comparable year-ago period. This is the first quarter recorded by the company after six quarters of losses.

The Aditya Birla group’s consolidated revenues from operations fell 28 per cent to Rs5,889.2 crore. The company had recorded a one-time gain of Rs3,364.5 crore on its tower sale, without which the telecom operator could have reported a loss of Rs3,108 crore for the June quarter.
On a standalone basis, the company recorded a net profit of Rs509 crore, compared with a net loss of Rs617 crore posted during the year-ago quarter. The company’s revenues fell to Rs589 crore, as against Rs8,167 crore recorded during the same quarter of last financial year, the company said in a statement.
The revenue for the quarter fell to mainly on account of down trending of ARPU, it added.
During Q1FY19, the Indian mobile services segment continued to decline under pressure from heavily discounted unlimited voice and bundled data plans and subsidised 4G feature phone offerings from new entrant Jio, forcing commensurate response from other existing mobile operators to retain subscribers, it said.
At present, the sector offers ‘Voice & Data’ unlimited bundles at unsustainable below cost price levels impacting the financials of all incumbent operators.
As existing customers continue to prefer lower value deep discounted unlimited voice and bundled data plans, the ‘Average Revenue Per User’ (ARPU) remained under pressure.
The EBITDA for the quarter stands at Rs660 crore. The ARPU for the quarter stood at Rs100 as against Rs105 in Q4FY18. Idea’s visitor location registry (VLR) subscribers as on 30June 2018 stands at 203.4 million with a market share of 20.9 per cent (May 2018), an improvement of 1.4 per cent compared with May 2017.
The increasing adoption of unlimited voice and bundled data plans continued to drive significant volume consumption of mobile voice and broadband data. 
The quarterly voice minutes at 349.5 billion, grew at 39.4 per cent versus 250.7 billion minutes in Q1FY18.
The monthly voice consumption (per user) has risen exponentially to 609 minutes from 441 minutes per months in Q1FY18.