Debt-ridden telecom operator Vodafone Idea's 5G services launch will depend on several factors such as use cases, customer demand, competitive dynamics etc., a senior official of the company said on Monday.

Speaking at the 27 th annual general meeting, Vi Managing Director and CEO Ravinder Takkar said that the promoters of the company have invested ₹4,940 crore and the company is in active discussion with investors for fund raise.

VIL acquired spectrum worth ₹18,800 crore, which includes radio waves in the mid band (3,300 MHz band) in 17 priority circles and spectrum in the 26 GHz band in 16 circles for 5G services. The company also acquired additional 4G spectrum in three circles of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Punjab.

The fresh spectrum bid adds an annual installment liability of ₹1,680 crore on the company.

Takkar said that the company has now acquired spectrum in all the frequency bands and further strengthened its 4G spectrum holding with acquisition of additional radio waves in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Punjab.

VIL’s performance

VIL has posted marginal narrowing of its consolidated loss at ₹7,296.7 crore for the June quarter compared to the year-ago period, as tariff hikes boosted its realisations. The telco's loss stood at ₹7,319.1 crore in the year-ago quarter.

VIL's revenue from operations grew to about ₹10,410 crore in the quarter ended June 30, 2022, improving nearly 14 per cent from the year-ago period.

Its Average Revenue Per User or ARPU -- a key monitorable for telecom players -- stood at ₹128 per subscriber for the quarter, compared to ₹104 in Q1 FY22. This represented an improvement of 23.4 per cent year-on-year, helped by tariff hikes.

At the end of the April-June 2022 quarter, VIL's total gross debt stood at ₹1,99,080 crore, comprising of deferred spectrum payment obligations of ₹1,16,600 crore, AGR liabilities of ₹67,270 crore that are due to the government, and debt from banks and financial institutions of ₹15,200 crore.

The Department of Telecom (DoT) has returned a bank guarantee worth ₹17,000 crore.

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