SSTL Q4 net loss significantly narrows at Rs 445 crore

SSTL Q4 net loss significantly narrows at Rs 445 crore New Delhi: Telecom operator Sistema Shyam Teleservices, which operates under MTS brand name, today reported narrowing of loss at Rs 445 crore in the fourth quarter ending December 31,2013.

The company posted loss of Rs 778.7 crore in the same period a year ago.

"SSTL' s net loss during the quarter reduced by 42.8 percent year on year basis. The Net loss reduced mainly on account of forex gains and lower interest expenses," SSTL Chief Executive Officer Dmitry Shukov said here.

The revenue of the company during the quarter reflected closing down of its operations in 13 out of 22 service areas. The revenue of company reduced by about 23 percent to Rs 299.6 crore during the quarter from Rs 390.2 crore it posted in the same period a year ago.

SSTL at present operates in 9 service areas - Delhi, Kolkata, Gujarat, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh (West), West Bengal and Rajasthan.

In the reporting period, SSTL?s mobile subscriber base increased by 2.2 percent quarter on quarter and reached 9.8 million customers as of December 31, 2013.

SSTL' s saw increase usage of its network by mobile subscribers at 373 minute per user from 363 minute noted in Q3, 2013.

Non-voice revenues, from both data and mobile value added services, for the quarter increased by 5.2 percent to Rs 103 crore as compared to previous quarter.

Data (mainly internet) services contributed 34.5 percent in SSTL revenue during the quarter, which is highest in percentage terms in the industry.

The company's Operating loss before depreciation and amortisation reduced by about 25 percent to Rs 208.1 crore during the quarter from Rs 278.6 crore it posted in same period a year ago.

"OIBDA margins continued to improve for SSTL on the back of revenue growth and also strict control over costs. The go forward plan includes continuing with investments in operations to drive maximum value from our 3G Plus network,? SSTL Chief Financial Officer Sergey Savchenko said.

SSTL made investments of Rs 37.4 crore during Q4 2013. During the reported quarter, the company launched its high speed data service, 3G Plus, in 550 towns across all 9 circles where it operates.

Debt from banks and financial institutions at the end of December 31, 2013 on the company stood at Rs 3,693 crore.

SSTL's annual loss for 2013 also narrowed to Rs 2,694.2 crore from Rs 2,982.1 crore it posted at the end of 2012.

The impact of reduced footprint reflected in annual revenue of the company as well.

The consolidated revenue of SSTL stood at Rs 1,227 crore at the end of 2013, down by 24.2 percent, from Rs 1,619.2 crore it registered at the end of 2012.