New Delhi: The country's largest telecom firm Bharti Airtel on Friday posted a 38.17 percent fall in second quarter consolidated net profit to Rs 1,027 crore due to higher interest outgo and costs related to the roll-out of its 3G network.
    
This is the seventh straight quarter in which Bharti Airtel has reported a consecutive decline in its net profit.
    
In the corresponding quarter ended September 30 last year, the company had registered a consolidated net profit of Rs 1,661 crore.
    
Bharti Airtel said the roll-out of its 3G network resulted in a higher amortisation cost of Rs 164 crore for the quarter, while its net interest cost rose to Rs 115 crore during the reporting period, Bharti airtel said.
    
The impact of the recent judicial pronouncement on regulatory matters has been prudently considered in the quarter's financials, it added.
    
On a quarter-on-quarter basis, Bharti Airtel's net profit for the second quarter was down 15.49 percent from Rs 1,215.2 crore in the June quarter.
    
Total sales were up by 13.38 percent at Rs 17,270 crore in Q2, FY'12, as against Rs 15,231 crore in Q2, FY'11.
    
"This year is progressing well for the company. India has achieved double-digit growth, fuelled by non-voice businesses. The arrest of continuously declining prices in India augurs well for the telecom industry," Bharti Airtel CMD Sunil Mittal said.
    
"We look forward to constructive deliberation on the draft National Telecom Policy, 2011, and Trai recommendations, for prompting the government's broadband vision and viability of the sector," he added.
    
The company's overall customer base stood at 237 million across 19 countries.
    
Monthly average revenue per user (ARPU), a key metric for telecom carriers, from Bharti's Indian operations fell to Rs 183 during the reporting quarter from Rs 190 in the June quarter. Average usage per user also declined to 423 minutes at the end of the September quarter from 445 minutes in the June quarter this year.
    
On the African business, Mittal said, "Africa has notched up strong revenue growth of 23 percent. The company has launched 3G services in Congo B and Airtel Money in Zambia and
Kenya."
    
"We continue to expand our footprint across Africa, with our recent acquisition of 2G and 3G licence in Rwanda," he added.
    
The monthly ARPU for Airtel's African operations stayed flat at USD 7.3 during the reporting quarter, while average usage increased to 128 minutes in the quarter ended September 30 from 121 minutes in the June quarter this year.
    
Last year, Bharti acquired Zain Telecom's Africa operations for USD 10.7 billion to become the world's fifth-largest mobile operator.

(Agencies)