Bharti Airtel's net profit tanked 72 per cent to Rs 373.4 crore for the quarter ended March 2017 as compared to Rs 1,319.2 crore in the year-ago period.
After starting in the negative zone, Bharti Airtel shares zoomed over 4 per cent on Wednesday despite reporting lowest fourth quarter results.Later, the share price of the company closed 7.87 per cent up at Rs 372.70. The share price opened at Rs 337 and touched a high and low of Rs 380.05 and Rs 336.95, respectively. On NSE, share price of the telecom major ended 7.98 per cent up at Rs 372.80.
The telecom major’s net profit tanked 72 per cent to Rs 373.4 crore for the quarter ended March 2017 as compared to Rs 1,319.2 crore in the year-ago period (read full story). The company announced is fourth quarter results post market hours.
According to Reuters, Bharti Airtel shares went up taking a cue from the telecom company’s subscriber additions as well as growth in Africa business. Its net additions in mobile services in India stood at 7.8 million during the quarter, while its Africa revenue grew 2.6 per cent in constant currency. Naval Seth, Equities Research Analyst, Emkay Global Financial Services told Reuters, “Subscriber churn is down, subscriber addition is healthy, Africa has surprised positively.”
In a BSE filing, the company also said that its Board of Directors at its meeting held on May 9, 2017, inter alia, has considered and recommended a final dividend of Re. 1 (Rupee One Only) per equity share of Rs 5/- each for the financial year 2016-17. “The above dividend, if declared by the shareholders at the ensuing Annual General Meeting, will be credited/dispatched within 30 days from the date of Annual General Meeting,” it said.
The company blamed its rival Reliance Jio for the lowest profit since the January-March quarter of 2013 and said the “sustained predatory pricing” by the new entrant was responsible for the drop in annual revenue of the entire telecom industry (Read: Bharti Airtel’s 4Q results — all key figures in a nutshell). Bharti Airtel MD and CEO (India and South Asia) Gopal Vittal said, “The “deteriorating” health of the industry was compounded by the tsunami of incoming traffic from the new operator.”
Among the telecom companies, Bharti Airtel is the first firm to announce its fourth quarter earnings, setting the tone for the industry. Idea Cellular is slated to announce its results on May 13. Vodafone, the country’s second largest operator, is not listed in India but is expected to share its financials later this month.