British telecommunications giant Vodafone reported on Tuesday, May 16, an annual net loss of 6.3 billion euros ($6.9 billion) after slashing the value of its troubled Indian division.
The performance in the 12 months to March compared with a net loss of 5.4 billion euros in the previous financial year, Vodafone said in a statement. Revenues declined 4.4 percent to 47.6 billion euros. At the same time, operating profit excluding exceptional items almost tripled to 3.7 billion euros on the back of a painful cost-cutting drive.
In the first half of the year, Vodafone initially took a non-cash impairment of 5.0 billion euros on its Indian activities and blamed a sharp increase in competition. However, in March, Vodafone announced the merger of its Indian unit with Idea Cellular in order to create India's largest telecoms operator and fight ultra-competitive new player Reliance Jio.
Following the deal, Vodafone added Tuesday it had partially reversed the Indian impairment -- but it still stood at 3.7 billion euros over the year.