Tuesday, June 12, 2007

HUTCH now has more mobile subscribers than BSNL!

Hutchison Essar(HEL) in which UK-based Vodafone had recently picked up a majority stake has
surpassed the number of GSM subscribers of BSNL bringing it to second position just after
Bharti Airtel. Datas show a record of 5.4 percent growth in its subscriber base during May 2007, as therewas an addition of 1.5 million subscribers during this period. While BSNL had a growth of
just 0.24 million.

Data compiled by Cellular Operators Association of India(COAI) shows that HEL had a little
over 29.2 million subscribers and a market share of 22.36 per cent (in the GSM space) as of
May-end, against 27.9 million and 21.43 per cent respectively for BSNL. Overall, HEL is now
the third largest cellular operator in the country after Bharti Airtel, which has over 40.7
million subscribers and Reliance Communications (RCOM) at 30.5 million.

Something funny in all this is that Hutch has no interest in increasing its subscribers,
and is rather more interested in increasing its revenue. Hutchison Essar MD, Asim Ghosh
told : "We don't watch subscribers รข€” we just watch revenues. We have been No. 2 in revenues
for a long time now".

Now lets see, if Hutch is able to defeat Bharti Airtel in this trend. Hey, I don't mean
subscribers, as Hutch themselves are not interested. I mean, reaching the height of getting
the highest revenues.

Some say that this sudden jump is because of the takerover by Vodafone. Maybe, or maynot
be. Who knows, whats going on with this companies internally.

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