New Delhi, May 2 - India's largest mobile operator Bharti Airtel today reported 28.19 per cent dip in net profit at Rs 1,006 crore for the fourth quarter ended March 31 -- its ninth straight quarterly drop in earnings -- as high interest cost and price war hit margins.
During January-March, 2010-11, the company had reported net profit of Rs 1,401 crore. However, it saw 15 per cent jump in revenues at Rs 18,729 crore for the fourth quarter, 2011-12, compared to Rs 16,293 crore in the year-ago period.
Meanwhile, Sunil Mittal, Chairman of Bharti, which has lost market share in past year to smaller rivals in the fiercely competitive market, warned of significant implication on the future of telecom sector because of uncertainty in the regulatory framework.
"The recent regulatory developments in India will have significant implications on the future of telephony and broadband, as well as India's global competitiveness," Mittal said.
Bharti Airtel's parent Bharti Enterprises Deputy CEO and Managing Director Akhil Gupta told reporters here, "From our point of view, a very good and satisfactory quarter. In India, we got the growth back... As far as Africa is concerned, the upward trajectory continues, both in terms of revenues, Ebitda and the overall operations."
For the entire 2011-12, Bharti's net profit fell 29.6 per cent at Rs 4,259 crore, compared to Rs 6,047 crore in 2010-11. It was down due to higher costs on account of 3G licence fee amortisation (Rs 593 crore), 3G interest costs (Rs 421 crore), forex fluctuation losses (Rs 422 crore) and tax provisions (Rs 481 crore).
Besides, during the year immense competition in India led to a tariff war affecting margins across the industry. Total revenue for the 2011-12 fiscal stood at Rs 71,451 crore, as against Rs 59,538 crore in 2010-11, up 20 per cent. PTI