Idea Cellular may well become India’s second largest telecom operator after market leader Bharti Airtel in terms of total subscriber base and push Vodafone to the third position.
If how soon is the question then the Aditya Birla managed operator, it seems, will make this feat by March, if the current trends are believed.
Let’s see how the current top three operators are stacked. Bharti Airtel is positioned at the top with 263.35 million subscribers followed by Vodafone with 202.79 million. Idea Cellular is placed at No. 3 with 187.68 million.
Basis November subscriber base Vodafone is just 15.11 million ahead of Idea. Now let’s see how Idea is marching towards the goal.
In the month of November India added 10.18 million new mobile subscribers (excluding Reliance Jio) and out of this Idea Cellular alone added 7.43 million or more than 70% of the total additions.
If we consider the operator wise growth over previous month, taking the total mobile subscriber base in to account, then Idea Cellular registered the highest growth. While growth of all other ooperators falls below 1%, Idea grew by 4.12%.
For the last 3 months Idea’s net subscriber additions are 1.91 million, 1.44 million and 7.43 million. And for the same period Vodafone’s net additions were 0.53 million, 1.18 million and 0.89 million for September, October and November respectively.
If we look at circle wise user acquisition Vodafone saw degrowth in 7 circles and low number of new user additions in another 6 circles. This shows increassing customer churn in these circles. At the same time, all 22 circles have seen new user additions for Idea Cellular.
In terms of market share Idea is placed at No. 3 with 23.41% ehile Vodafone is at No. 2 with 25.29%.
If Idea Cellular continues to maintain the subscriber addition rate, in next 3 months, it would not be difficult to acquire another 15 million customers. Interestingly, it could be sooner than that if we take Vodafone’s degrowth in to consideration.