After posting negative growth in November and December last year, GSM operators opened 2013 on a positive note, registering a rise in their net subscriber base in January. According to the latest report from the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI), the growth registered is very marginal as operators add only 4 lakh new subscribers in the last month.
The COAI report reveals the growth was led by the likes of Idea Cellular, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone, bringing the total number of GSM subscribers to 65.75 crore at the end of January 2013
According to the report, Idea Cellular added 24.5 lakh new customers during January, raising its subscriber base to 11.64 crore. Last month, the operator had suffered a loss of 1.97 lakh customers.
Bharti Airtel added 22.86 lakh new subscribers in January, bring its mobile total customer base to 18.41 crore. Vodafone could only add 2 lakh new subscribers, taking its total subscriber base to 14.77 crore by January end.
Aircel, Uninor and Videocon continued to see negative growth in January as well. Videocon lost by 13.8 lakh to 22.57 lakh in January from 36.4 lakh in December, while Aircel and Uninor lost 17.75 lakh and 14 lakh customers, respectively.
The COAI in its previous reports had revealed decline of 90 lakh subscribers in November and 66 lakh customers in December 2012 mainly due to disconnection of inactive SIMs.
Source: Business Standard