Posts filed under ‘RCom’
Following a string of recent GSM-based service launch announcements, Indian mobile operator Reliance Communications (RCOM) has said it has now completed its nationwide GSM footprint, the Business Standard reports. As RCOM announced its most recently launched GSM infrastructure, adding coverage of more than 50 towns and 5,000 villages in the Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) circle, RCOM President SP Shukla, said, ‘The launch of Reliance Mobile’s GSM services in J&K marks the completion of the company’s nationwide footprint, which already covers over one billion Indians in other states of the country.’ January 2009 saw the cellco announce GSM launches in Mumbai, Rajasthan and Punjab, while earlier this month Delhi was added to the list of regions in which RCOM offered its GSM-based services.
India’s Economic Times is reporting that Reliance Communications (RCOM) has launched GSM-based mobile services in the capital Delhi, following a string of GSM rollouts across the country. The operator has installed approximately 950 new cellular towers in the region for the launch, and is expected to share the existing infrastructure of its CDMA-based operations in the circle; it has around 850 existing towers in Delhi. Initially only pre-paid GSM services are available, although RCOM has indicated that post-paid options will be offered in approximately three weeks.
Reuters is reporting that Norwegian telecoms group Telenor has withdrawn plans to carry out a share issue to fund investment in Indian cellco Unitech Wireless. Telenor has announced it will instead raise funds for the mobile operator through cash flow and net debt, also revealing that it has signed a USD1.2 billion three-year loan agreement. The company has also proposed that there will be no dividend payout in 2008 or 2009. Commenting on the development a statement from the operator noted, ‘Closing of the Indian transaction is subject to certain conditions being fulfilled…(and) Telenor anticipates that this will take place during the first quarter of 2009.’
In separate but related news, Unitech Wireless is reportedly in talks regarding a tower sharing arrangement with Reliance Communications (RCOM) and Tata Teleservices (TTSL). A tower sharing agreement is one of the preconditions of the Telenor acquisition of a 60% stake in Delhi-based Unitech Wireless.
Indian cellco Reliance Communications (RCOM) has revealed a 2.7% rise year-on-year in consolidated net profit for the three months ended 31 December 2008. Net profit for the quarter stood at INR14.1 billion (USD286.7 million), up from INR1.37 million a year earlier. Revenues for the operator also rose against the same period last year, climbing 20% to INR58.5 billion, whilst earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose 11% y-o-y to INR23.5 billion. RCOM attributed the growth to the increased subscriber numbers, boosted by the launch of GSM and DTH services. RCOM chairman and managing director has announced that the cellco will reduce CAPEX for the next financial year to INR150 billion, down from the INR250 billion it has planned for the existing year; the operator claims to have spent INR160 billion so far this financial year ending March.
RCOM’s subscriber base climbed to 61.35 million at the end of December 2008, up from 56.05 million a year earlier, with the operator reporting that it had signed up ten million customers to its GSM-based services since launch in December 2008. RCOM has announced that its GSM network coverage will expand to approximately 24,000 towns from the current 14,000 it covers in the near future.
In separate but related news RCOM has also announced that it has integrated its GSM and CDMA services in the Orissa circle, and will now offer both under the united banner of ‘Reliance Mobile’. The cellco has claimed that merger will allow it to better utilise its resources and improve growth prospects.
RCom’s has crossed 100,000 subscribers on the first day of the launch of its GSM service in Mumbai. ”The high volume sales can be attributed to the company’s aggressive strategy,” an R-Com spokesperson said. The company is offering up to 100% savings to subscribers-Rs.300 ARPU (average revenue per person) mobile customers at a one-time subscription charge (including GSM SIM) of Rs.25.