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Bharti Airtel profit zooms to Rs 2008 cr in Q4 on ARPU lift and exceptional gain

New Delhi: India's second-largest telecom operator Bharti Airtel on Tuesday posted more than twofold year-on-year jump in its consolidated net profit for the March quarter to Rs 2,008 crore, buoyed by a lift in average revenue per user and an exceptional gain.

The telco said its Q4 scorecard was backed by strong performance delivery across the portfolio and its CEO Gopal Vittal, in a statement, exuded optimism about opportunities in the coming years and Airtel being "well-poised" as a company.

Airtel, which competes in the market with Reliance Jio and Vodafone Idea, as well as state-owned BSNL/MTNL, promised to maintain razor sharp focus on financial flexibility, optimising the capital structure and finance cost.

Airtel's revenue from operations rose 22.3 per cent to Rs 31,500 cr during Q4 FY22, compared to the year-ago period.

The net profit before exceptional items for Q4'22 came in at Rs 1,860 crore, while exceptional gain boosted the net profit numbers to Rs 2,008 crore.

As a result, profit after tax was over 2.5 times higher for the January-March quarter, compared to Rs 759 crore recorded in the year ago period.

"The net exceptional gain of Rs 9,062 million during the quarter ended March 31, 2022 comprises of gain on account of sale of telecom tower assets of Rs 7,593 million, gain on account of settlement with a strategic vendor of Rs 9,923 million, charges on account of provision of levies of Rs 3,216 million, charge on account of impairment of property, plant and equipment of Rs 3,810 million and charge on account of prepaying bonds of Rs 1,428 million," the company explained in its quarterly report.

Airtel's Average Revenue Per User or ARPU, a key metrics for all telcos, came in at Rs 178 for the quarter, up from Rs 145 in Q4'21 "led by healthy flow through of tariff revision and strong 4G customer additions during the year", the company said.

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