Refining, petrochemicals margins lift RIL profit by 7%

13 October, 2017, 19:43 | Author: Cecil Buchanan

The telecom business reported a net loss of Rs 271 crore, but was profitable on the EBIT level at Rs 260 crore.

Operational performance overshoots analysts' expectations, with the EBITDA (Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) at Rs 15,565 crore with margin at 16.4 percent in the second quarter of the ongoing financial year.

Reliance Jio's sister arm, Reliance Retail, said that it sold 3 million LYF smartphone and Mi-Fidevices and accessories through distribution channel during the quarter ended September. As the latest entrant to India's highly competitive telecom sector after its launch in September 2016, Jio shook the sector and sparked a price war by offering free voice calls for life and drastically reduced tariffs. It commenced commercial operations from July 2017, as per the statement.

"Exports from the refining and petrochemical operations during the second quarter at Rs 41,560 crore were higher by 10.2 per cent, as against Rs 37,717 crore exported in the same quarter of a year ago, due to higher volumes and product prices", the company said.

Reliance will continue to spend around Rs 7,000 crore a quarter on Jio for the next few quarters, Anshuman Thakur, Reliance Jio's head of strategy said.

"The world is transforming, turning digital and India is not going to be left behind", he said in a statement.

Mukesh D. Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director, Reliance Industries Limited said: "Our Company reported another quarter of robust performance". Jio said its users consumed over 1.78 billion hours of high-speed video per month during the quarter.

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The average revenue per user of Jio during the quarter stood at 156.4 per month.

The Jio numbers comes at a time when the sector is complaining of financial stress, and revenues and profits of the older telcos have taken a beating.

Reliance Industries chief financial officer, Alok Agarwal. In April-June quarter, Idea posted loss of Rs 815.9 crore while RCom posted loss of Rs 1,210 crore.

RIL also witnessed revenue from petrochemicals business increase by 24.9 per cent to Rs 27,999 crore during the quarter ended September 2017 on the back of higher volumes in the polyester chain and firm prices. On the other hand, the telecom operator posted EBIT of Rs 260 crore with EBIT margin of 4.2 per cent.

The Telecom Commission - the highest policy making body of the Department of Telecom - recently approved recommendations of an interministerial group for giving six more years to telcos to pay for the spectrum they bought in auctions.

Adding to the financial worries of old operators, the telecom regulator has slashed the domestic mobile termination charges by almost 58 per cent to 6 paise a minute, prompting many operators to approach the courts against the TRAI decision. Capital expenditure was principally on account of ongoing projects in the petrochemicals and refining business at Jamnagar and digital services business.

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