Thursday, January 22, 2009

Idea Cellular Limited: Q3 Results

Idea Cellular Limited (Idea) today announced its unaudited results (limited review) for the 3rd quarter (Q3) and nine months ended December 31, 2008.

Revenues for Idea's 13 operating service areas for Q3 at Rs. 26,209 mn, grew by 13.9% on a QoQ basis and by 53.2% on a YoY basis.

The EBITDA for the 11 Idea service areas in Q3 enhanced to Rs 7,570 mn compared to Rs 6,446 mn in Q2, representing a margin improvement from 28.1% to 29.4%. However, Q3 captures the impact of Mumbai and Bihar launches for the entire quarter, whereas Q2 had the impact only of Mumbai for 5 weeks. Consequently, Total EBITDA margin declined marginally from 26.4% to 26.0%, even though Total EBITDA increased by 11.9% from Rs 6081 mn in Q2 to Rs 6,805 mn in Q3.

On a consolidated basis, Revenues for Q3 at Rs. 27,311 mn, grew by 18.5% on a QoQ basis. The EBITDA at Rs 6,974 mn showed a growth of 14.9% on a QoQ basis. Consolidated PAT for Q3 was Rs 2,195 mn as against Rs 2,562 mn on a standalone basis. The consolidated PAT is depressed by Rs 367 mn on account of the consolidation of Idea's 41.09% shareholding in Spice Communications from 16th Oct 08 and on account of Idea group's 16% shareholding in Indus Towers.

On 5th Dec 08, an affiliate of Providence Equity Partners has invested Rs. 21 bn in Aditya Birla Telecom Limited (ABTL) by way of subscription to 1.925 mn Compulsorily Convertible Preference Shares to be converted into 16.14% of equity share capital of ABTL post conversion.

Idea, including service areas of Punjab, Karnataka and Bihar, added 4.03 mn subscribers during Q3 taking its subscriber tally to 38.01 mn, reflecting a national market share of 11.0%.

Idea, along with Spice and ABTL, now holds GSM spectrum for every service area in India.

Note: Consolidated results incorporate, inter alia, ABTL (a 100% subsidiary) which comprises of Bihar service area operations and a 16% shareholding in Indus Towers; and Idea's 41.09% holding in Spice Communications w.e.f. 16th Oct'08. Figures of past periods have been regrouped, wherever necessary. Finance & Treasury charges represent Interest & Financing cost net of investment income and forex gains/losses.

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