CEO Akshaya Moondra said Vodafone Idea launch 5G services in six months.

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CEO Akshaya Moondra said Vodafone Idea launch 5G services in six months.

According to chief executive Akshaya Moondra, Vodafone Idea is in advanced talks with its vendors and plans to Vodafone Idea launch 5G services in six months 5G services in the next six months. The third-largest telecom operator has also fulfilled its minimum rollout obligations in four circles, as required by the government.

Although it plans to use 5G services to reach 40% of its revenue base during the next 24 to 30 months, stopping the decline in its subscriber base by matching competitors’ 4G coverage will take precedence.

Vodafone Idea launch 5G services

We anticipate launching the Vodafone Idea (Vi) 5G network in around six months. The primary emphasis will be on major cities or locations with a high density of 5G devices. In terms of timing, our 5G investments will be a little incremental; we’ll make them as the market develops,” he declared.

By introducing Vodafone Idea launch 5G services immediately, we will be able to make effective use of the capital expenditure. We are in discussions with tech partners on Vodafone Idea (VI) 5G and have applied for the Bihar and Mumbai circles. In the earnings call, Moondra stated, “We are also in advanced stages of trials for OrAN and VRAN.”

Regarding Vodafone Idea launch 5G services equipment, the telecom has been in talks with businesses like Nokia and Ericsson. It completed a trial with open RAN provider Mavenir, which is probably going to result in an agreement for commercial use in the upcoming months.

The majority of the approximately ₹55,000 crore in capital expenditures over three years will go toward establishing 5G in 17 priority circles and enhancing 4G coverage throughout the nation. According to the top executive, the capacity improvement needed to solve decongestion will be completed within the next few months, and the coverage needed to remain competitive will be addressed within the next 12 to 15 months.

Moondra reiterated that users must pay more for using more data, but added that the market can “definitely” withstand one more pricing hike. “While the price increase on the entry level may not be significant, it had to emphasize paying more for more usage,” he stated.

The chief executive’s remarks were made in response to those made earlier this week by Gopal Vittal, the top executive of Airtel, who stated that “substantial repair” was required in order for telecom operators to get an acceptable return on capital employed and that Indian pricing were “abysmally low.”

Vodafone Idea reported on Thursday that its losses for the quarter ending in March 2024 had increased to ₹7,666 crore, up from ₹6,424 crore in the previous year. A crucial indicator of profitability, average revenue per user (Arpu), increased to ₹146, up 7.6% year over year, mostly due to changes made to the entry-level plan and subscriber upgrades.

The third-ranked carrier by customers, which obtained ₹18,000 crore through the biggest FPO in India last month, announced that it was in discussions with lenders to obtain ₹35,000 crore in loan finance, which it would use to expand its networks. Bank contributions will total about ₹25,000 crore. “Vendor liabilities and debt would be cleared through internal cash generation,” he stated.

As part of the government assistance package, he continued, the company was currently considering converting the impending government liability from installments from spectrum purchases, which were due in FY26 and FY27, into equity.

The company further stated that it was in discussions to engage into payment plans for paying dues or to obtain waivers with lenders, vendors, and the telecom department, to which it owes the majority of its debt.

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