Reliance Jio, the new entrant who’s shaken up the mobile telecom operators space, has now announced that it has crossed the mark of 108 million users as of March 31. Earlier in February, the company had announced that it had over 100 million subscribers.
Hitting the 100 million users mark within just six months of its launch was a commendable job as it made Jio the first Indian telecom operator to reach the said subscriber base so fast.
While the number of subscribers is growing, the company is bearing heavy losses due to its free schemes. RIL continued to report heavy losses even in the last quarter of the financial year. It has suffered a loss of ₹22.50 crore, which is up from ₹7.46 crore in the previous financial year.
Gross income for the company stood at ₹1.22 crore, which is down from ₹3.15 crore. The net worth for six months period ending March 2017 was ₹70,864 crore as opposed to ₹37,236 crore for the same period the previous year. The expenses for active months increased to ₹34.88 crore from ₹13.63 crore.
The company has claimed that over 70 percent of its subscriber base have opted for the paid Prime membership. As per last data, 72 million subscribers are active Jio Prime members. We don’t know the exact number of active users under Jio Summer Surprise and Dhan Dhana Dhan offers.
Given the number of users, Jio is now also looking at expanding its network. The plan is to set up over 100,000 towers, in addition to the existing 100,000 all over the country. The company’s plan is to match Airtel and Vodafone in terms of cell sites across the nation. Both Airtel and Vodafone have close to two lakh telecom sites each.
Reliance Jio’s capital expenditure for the current quarter is pegged around ₹18,000 crore, same as the January-March quarter. So far, Jio has invested over ₹2 lakh crore for improving its network services.
Notably, Jio is the only operator which has deployed pan-India LTE network across the 800MHz, 1800MHz and 2300MHz bands, giving it a tremendous capacity advantage. The company is currently working with Samsung on a rather “massive” 4G LTE network expansion project in rural areas of the country, besides working to bring 5G services in India.