iWorld

Airtel ecstatic about home broadband opportunity; collab with local cable operators paying well

The telco operator added almost 60,000-65,000 net additions in last quarter

https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/smartcrop_800x800/public/images/tv-images/2020/06/05/airtel.jpg?itok=opleVmdC

MUMBAI: A recent report by Fitch which indicates a slow revenue growth in FY21 for telecom players might be bad news for Airtel, which is already losing market shares to Jio. But its home broadband business is gradually taking off. In the last quarter of FY 20, the telco operator added almost 60,000-65,000 net additions, one of the highest numbers it has seen in many quarters. Moreover, the lockdown has boosted the demand for home broadband.

“We are excited about the home broadband opportunity. I think India is an underserved market and there is a very big opportunity to expand broadband on a structural basis. Having said that, I think what we have seen in the recent few weeks is a massive surge in latent demand and home broadband,” Bharti Airtel India and South Asia managing director and chief executive officer Gopal Vittal said in an earnings call.

Vittal also spoke about an innovative model that it is experimenting with: collaborating with local cable operators to provide the last mile and using a digital model to access more cities and expand the scale of its broadband business. While the model has already been rolled out in 13 cities, he claims it has seen good traction reinforcing its trust on opportunities for broadband internal expansion.

Talking about the strategy, Vittal added that they need to expand a lot more in top ten cities at first. Hence, there will be some step-up in capex directed to expanding Airtel’s broadband in these large cities. Airtel rolled out over 250,000 home parcels in the last quarter while total capex for the quarter stood at Rs 97 crore.

“The second part is going beyond 10 cities or 50 cities. We got into smaller cities. For example, we have gone into Jammu, Dehradun, Bareilly, and Nasik. These are cities where we hadn't gone before and now have partnered with local cable operators and created an Uber-like model, which is entirely digital and gives them a share of revenue and this is actually working quite well,” Vittal said.

“We are unleashing entrepreneurial energy of these cable operators, in managing the last mile for us, and at the same time, we have the Airtel brand, customer support, billing systems, technology and of course the purchase of routers and all of the other backend equipment coupled with the fact that we have fibre availability at the towers for which the backhaul is available. So I think we are using the best of both worlds to actually partner and expand,” he added further.

According to TRAI data, the top five wired broadband service providers were BSNL (8.23 million), Bharti Airtel (2.43 million), Atria Convergence Technologies (1.54 million), Hathway Cable & Datacom (0.92 million) and Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd (0.84 million) as on 31 January, 2020.

Bharti Airtel India and South Asia chief financial officer Badal Bagri said that affordability has been one of the key drivers which he terms war on waste. This ‘war on waste’ is not just about operating expenses but also about efficiency and capital expenditure. He also mentioned that Airtel’s cost of the rollout of home passes has substantially reduced over the last two-three years. Hence, he is of the view that the cost structures which it operates in are fairly affordable, enabling them for an aggressive bid in the sector.

Latest Reads

https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/16/times_internet.jpg?itok=DQAHd5yn
Puneet Tripathi joins Times Internet programmatic division

KOLKATA: Times Internet has appointed Puneet Tripathi as programmatic strategic planning & solutions head. He took on his new role in December 2020. Prior to this, Tripathi was associated with Alibaba group as monetisation strategy & programmatic director. His experience spans over 17 years...

iWorld eNews
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/15/whatspp.jpg?itok=kzBHoYuq
Petition filed challenging WhatsApp privacy policy

KOLKATA: In the wake of controversy over its updated privacy policy, Facebook-owned messaging app WhatsApp is facing legal suit in India. The new policy verges on user surveillance and threatens India’s security, a petition filed against the messenger said. After a brief hearing today, the matter...

iWorld Over The Top Services
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/14/eros.jpg?itok=ORf7U16m
Eros Now inks streaming, branding partnership with Abu Dhabi T10

KOLKATA: Eros Now has inked a streaming and branding partnership with 2020 Abu Dhabi T10 Tournament, the fourth edition of the popular cricket league. As part of the multi-year deal, Eros Now will livestream the popular cricket tournament in significant international markets, such as Australia, Sri...

iWorld Over The Top Services
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/13/sonyliv.jpg?itok=ofr0rUOo
SonyLIV returns with the second season of Gullak

KOLKATA: Rickety walls, inquisitive neighbours, unending hassles yet limitless dreams; these define the dynamics of The Mishras who struck a chord upon their visit in 2019. With an IMDB rating of 9.1, Gullak Season 1 won accolades for its well-crafted characters, versatile performances and...

iWorld Over The Top Services
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/13/flipkart.jpg?itok=81G9Kp34
Flipkart’s new subscription pack for affordable smartphone ownership

KOLKATA: Homegrown e-commerce marketplace Flipkart, India’s, has introduced a unique Flipkart SmartPack offering that enables millions of Indians to purchase new smartphones in an affordable manner. By paying for a 12 or 18-month SmartPack subscription, starting 17 January 2021, consumers can...

iWorld e-commerce
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/13/watcho.jpg?itok=83V5OwLU
Dish TV India’s OTT App WATCHO is set to enthrall its viewers with its new series ‘The Jail Plan’

In line with its track record of providing unique and engaging content to its viewers, Dish TV India Limited, India’s leading DTH Company announced the launch of its new web series ‘The Jail Plan’ on its OTT platform ‘Watcho’. This is the country’s first-ever prison break story with women in the...

iWorld Over The Top Services
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/13/mx.jpg?itok=PGtylNNS
MX Taka Tak’s monthly active users up 150%

NEW DELHI: MX Player's TakaTak is making inroads into the short form UGC video business fatafat. From 26 million installs in July 2020, the month it was launched post the ban on market leader Chinese-origin TikTok, it shot to 120 million installs by the end of December – an impressive growth of 360...

iWorld Over The Top Services
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/13/airtel.jpg?itok=3xudXeEi
Amazon partners with Airtel to offer Prime Video mobile edition

MUMBAI: Since its launch, Amazon Prime Video has emerged as a market leader in the OTT space. With its slew of original releases like Paatal Lok, Mirzapur, Inside Edge, Family Man, The Boys and others, it has created a strong community of loyal viewers. The platform is investing heavily in local...

iWorld Over The Top Services
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/13/what.jpg?itok=a-IvWXcG
New WhatsApp policy: Chaos & clarification

It was over a decade ago that Mashable CEO Pete Cashmore wrote a scathing critique of an increasingly wired world and concluded by saying, “Privacy is dead, and social media hold the smoking gun.”

iWorld Over The Top Services

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories

* indicates required