Troubled telecom operator Vodafone saw its losses balloon during the quarter ended June 31, 2020 on the back of exceptional items loss worth Rs 19,232 crore. The company posted a net loss of Rs 25,460 crore during June quarter this fiscal, as opposed to Rs 4,873.9 crore in the same quarter last year and Rs 11,643.50 crore in March quarter last fiscal.
The primary reason behind the loss was the exceptional loss of Rs 19,232.20 crore during the quarter under review. A filing to the exchanges showed that exceptional items included Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) payment worth Rs 19,440.5 crore, one time spectrum charges of Rs 123 crore, and merger-related costs of Rs 374.6 crore, and provisions of Rs 37.7 crore.
"During this quarter, on prudence, we have recognised a charge of Rs. 19,440 crore as an exceptional item towards the total estimated AGR liability, in addition to estimated recognised liability of Rs 46,000 crore as on March 31, 2020," Vodafone Idea said in a statement.
Revenue from operations during Q1 FY21 stood at Rs 10,659.30 crore, as compared to Rs 11,269.90 crore in Q1 FY20. Earnings before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) during tghe June quarter stood at Rs 4,098.40 crore, as opposed to Rs 3,716.30 crore in the corresponding quarter last year. EBITDA margin improved slightly to 38.4 per cent from 33 per cent in the year-ago period.
"Subscriber churn reduced to an all-time low of 2.0% (3.3% in Q4FY20), as net disconnections were lower during the quarter. However, the gross additions were severely impacted by closure of retail stores during the nationwide lockdown resulting in subscriber base decline to 279.8 million in Q1FY21 from 291.1 million in Q4FY20. ARPU for Q1FY21 was Rs 114, versus Rs 121 in Q4FY20," Vodafone said.
Gross debt, excluding lease liabilities, in the June quarter was Rs 1.1 lakh crore, including deferred spectrum payment obligations due to the government of Rs. 92,270 crore. Cash and cash equivalents, excluding margin deposits, stood at Rs 3,450 crore and net debt stood at Rs. 1.15 lakh crore, against Rs 1.12 lakh crore in Q4FY20.
Vodafone said its capex spend during the period under review was Rs 600 crore, lower compared to Rs. 1,820 billion in Q4 FY20, as the rollout in Q1 FY21 was impacted by COVID-19 with disruptions to equipment supply and logistics following the nationwide lockdown.