VIL dials investors for funds, moots ‘floor price’ for tariff woes

Telco’s loss narrows to ₹7,023 crore in quarter ended March

Cash-strapped Vodafone Idea (VIL) said it is in active talks with potential investors for fund raising, and asserted that ‘floor price’ remains the ‘best and most preferred’ fix for industry’s woes arising from tariff-related issues.

VIL confirmed that it has approached the government to extend moratorium on spectrum instalments. It highlighted that the sector’s biggest pain point comes from pricing issues, and conceded that tariff hike is ‘absolutely’ essential to revive the sector now under stress.

Speaking at analyst call post Q4 earnings announcement, Ravinder Takkar, CEO VIL said, “On fund raising, we are currently in active discussion with potential investors.” Mr. Takkar did not give a firm timeline for fund raising — which has been significantly delayed — but emphasised that the company is fully engaged with investors and ‘interest’ continues.

On whether VIL had an alternate plan ready if it was unable to raise funds, he insisted, “I don’t think there is any reason to start creating Plan B. We are confident that funding will take place in the coming weeks.”

“Pricing is much lower than it needs to be, whereas the consumption that customers and overall citizens enjoy is significantly higher than what it used to be several years go,” Mr. Takkar said.

VIL’s consolidated loss narrowed to about ₹7,023 crore for the quarter ended March, mainly on the strength of cost optimisation. The loss stood at ₹11,643.5 crore in the year-earlier period.

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