Airtel adds 2.2 million subscribers in Karnataka

BANGALORE:Airtel has increased its market share in Karnataka from 32 per cent to 38 per cent, adding 2.2 million customers to its network in 2006-07. This accounts for 48 per cent of the total population going mobile in the State during this period.

To keep pace with the growing network, Airtel is strengthening its distribution network.

It plans to increase the number of distributors from 600 as of 31st March 2007 to 1400 in a year‘s time. Retail outlets are to increase from 47,000 to 60,000. The company plans to go the ‘ITC way’ and have even the small ’paan and cigarette shop’ sell their recharge cards, which will bring up the current numbers from 1800 to 8000 this fiscal.

Airtel’s Karnataka operations have the largest subscriber base among all the circles and players in India, announced Deepak Mehrotra who has been promoted to Director – south this April from CEO, Karnataka circle.

Airtel covers more than 75 per cent of the overall population in Karnataka. This includes 99.7 per cent coverage of the urban population and 61.3 per cent of the rural population. Airtel currently covers about 5500 out of 5682 gram panchayats, a 97 per cent coverage. Presently, it covers 2250 Km (90 Per cent) of the Highways and 1425 Km (89 Per cent) of railroads in Karnataka. This coverage will touch 100 per cent in the coming year, according to the official release.


Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, along with Bihar, MP, UP and Maharashtra will share a major chunk of the proposed spends of $ 3.3 to 3.5 billion this year, since Airtel plans to focus on these circles.


For Karnataka this means that the focus will shift to rural towns with populations less than 20,000.

The company also has its 3G platform ready for Karnataka and is awaiting approvals from the concerned authorities for launching the same.

Airtel COO V Venkatesh has been promoted to replace Deepak Mehratro as CEO, while Airtel Maharashtra Circle vp sales and marketing Yatish Mehrotra has been promoted to COO, Karnataka circle

Bharti Airtel Limited, a group company of Bharti Enterprises, is one of India‘s leading private sector providers of telecommunications services with an aggregate of 39.02 million customers as of end of March‘07, consisting of 37.14 million mobile customers. Bharti Airtel has been rated among 10 best performing companies in the world in the BusinessWeek IT 100 list.


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