India's Reliance Communications has reported a 14.9% year-on-year fall in net profit for the quarter ending December 31 to 1.71 billion rupees ($25.3 million).
Third quarter revenue fell 3.3% over the same period to 52.89 billion rupees as a result of the expiry of the operator's 2G licenses in five of India's 22 telecom circles.
But the company successfully migrated those customers onto its 3G network and improved network coverage and quality in the five circles by entering intra-circle roaming arrangements in the areas with Vodafone and Aircel.
As a result of the ongoing expansion of the operator's 3G operations, data traffic grew 35% year-on-year to 103.2 billion megabytes. The company ended the quarter with 38.8 million data customers including 23.1 million 3G customers.
On a quarter-on-quarter basis profit grew 9.6% and revenue declined by a narrower 1.1%. Global operations revenue meanwhile increased by 4.1% to 11.06 billion rupees.
RCom recently entered a 4G partnership that includes spectrum sharing and trading with Reliance Jio Infocomm, and has commenced exclusive negotiations with Aircel regarding a potential merger of the two companies' wirelesss businesses.
The company has also signed a non-binding agreement to sell its tower assets and related infrastructure to Tillman Global Holdings and TPG Asia