Idea Cellular quarterly net profit falls 13 percent

Mumbai, April 26: Telecom service provider Idea Cellular Thursday reported a 13 percent decline in net profit for the quarter ended March 31 at Rs.238.98 crore owing to higher depreciation and interest charges on 3G investments.

The company had posted a net profit of Rs.274.52 crore during the like period of the previous financial year, the company said in a regulatory filing.

The total income stood at 5,369.69 crore during the quarter, up 26.8 percent against Rs.4,234.72 crore during the like period of 2010-11.

The firm posted a decline of 19.6 percent in net profit at Rs.722.99 crore during the year ended March 31, 2012 as compared to Rs.898.7 crore for the year ended March 31, 2011.

Total income during the year under review stood at Rs.19,541 crore, up 26 percent, against Rs.15,503 crore during the like period the previous financial year.

The uptrend of Average Realisation Per Minute (ARPM) was halted with decline in ARPM to 42.2 paisa from 43.3 paisa, a harsh reminder of the market place battle and overcapacity.

While challenges on the voice ARPM continue, the company remains focused to improve ‘non-voice revenue’, which contributed 14.3 percent of revenue in the quarter against 13.7 percent in the previous quarter.

Idea also said that its 3G investment plans are on track and high speed broadband services are now available in 3,000 towns and 10,000 villages in 20 service areas (including roaming arrangements).

“The company, in its own way, is accelerating the deployment of 3G ecosystem, by launching Idea branded 3G handsets,” it said.

Nearly 2.6 million Idea customers are active on company’s 3G platform.

Idea had a net gain of 2.9 million customers through mobile number portability as on April 22, 2012. It currently has 113 million subscribers.

At the Bombay Stock Exchange the shares of Idea Cellular closed 4 percent up at Rs.83.30.