New Delhi, Oct 13 (PTI) Reliance Jio, India’s newest telecom operator known for its disruptive tariffs, today posted a loss of Rs 270.5 crore for the three months to September as against Rs 21.3 crore loss in the preceding June quarter.
Standalone revenue from operations stood at about Rs 6,147 crore for the September quarter, said Reliance Jio whose subscriber base has swelled to over 138 million now.
In a statement, Reliance Jio — which competes with the likes of Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular — said that the consolidated value of services stood at Rs 7,213 crore with consolidated EBIT or earnings before interest and tax of Rs 261 crore.
Jio formally launched 4G services in September 2016 with free voice and data offers. It commenced commercial operations from July 2017, as per the statement.
The company reported earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation or EBITDA of Rs 1,443 crore in September 2017 quarter, with margins at 23.5 per cent.
Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani said Jio is creating the foundation of data for the next-generation business, at a time when India is ready to go digital and move from voice to data.
“The world is transforming, turning digital and India is not going to be left behind,” he said in a statement.
The company said on a net basis 15.3 million customers were added during the quarter.
Jio registered customer churn of 1 per cent per month but said that the number is “expected to reduce further”.
The company said data consumption on its network reached 9.62 gigabyte (GB) per user per month, and voice consumption stood at 626 minutes per month. It recorded 178 crore hours of high speed video consumption per month.
The average revenue per user of Jio during the quarter stood at 156.4 per month. Giving its operational metrics, the company said that the total wireless data traffic stood at 378 crore GB during the quarter while the average voice traffic stood at 267 crore minutes a day.
The Jio numbers comes at a time when the sector is complaining of financial stress, and revenues and profits of the older telcos have taken a beating.
Telecom operators Idea Cellular and Reliance Communications registered their first ever consolidated loss in a quarter after Jio started its service. In April-June quarter, Idea posted loss of Rs 815.9 crore while RCom posted loss of Rs 1,210 crore.
The country’s largest telecom company Bharti Airtel posted a 74.89 per cent plunge in consolidated net profit to Rs 367 crore for the June quarter of current fiscal.
Incumbent operators Airtel, Idea, and Vodafone have blamed the free offers by the newcomer for failing health of the industry, that, as per some estimates, has a cumulative debt of Rs 4.5 lakh crore.
The Telecom Commission — the highest policy making body of the Department of Telecom — recently approved recommendations of an interministerial group for giving six more years to telcos to pay for the spectrum they bought in auctions.
Adding to the financial woes of the incumbent operators, the telecom regulator has slashed the domestic mobile termination charges by nearly 58 per cent to 6 paise a minute, prompting many operators to approach the courts against the decision.
The tariff war has also accelerated the consolidation in the industry and large operators are either combining forces (Idea-Vodafone) or acquiring smaller players (Bharti’s acquisition of Telenor and now the consumer mobile business of Tata Group) to protect their turf.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.