Rank 15: Bharti Cellular: Magic Worked, but...

VoicenData Bureau
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Despite an impressive growth of 77.5 percent in the subscriber base, Bharti

Cellular, the No 1 private service provider across all segments in 2000-01, lost

that coveted position and slipped to the third position among cellular service

providers. It recorded a total revenue of Rs 537 crore, with a growth of 19.14

percent over FY 2000-01. The company also lost its marketshare by a significant

9 percent, down to 56.96 percent in the Rs 943-crore Delhi market. It, however,

is still fairly ahead of the competition.


As Bharti concentrated on hooking up more subscribers in a short time, it had

to depend on the low-end pre-paid customers. Bharti’s marketing was centered

more around its pre-paid brand–Magic. The large number of pre-paid customers

brought the ARPU down.

Bharti Cellular 





SS Dhillon

Area of Operation : Cellular Service
Address : D-184 Okhla Industrial Area Phase I,

New Delhi
Tel  : 98100 98100
Fax: : 011-681 0041
Web site : 

Strength  : Largest cellular service provider, National brand
Weakness : Low revenue generating customers
Opportunity : Value-adds
Threat  : Hutch luring high-yield customers

Bharti did launch a few TV commercials for building a nationwide Airtel

brand, but there was no major marketing campaign for value-added services. On

the technology front, Bharti implemented GPRS technology in its network, though

the commercial GPRS service is yet to be launched.

This year Bharti launched subscriber local dialing service, which allows

Bharti subscribers to call in-roamers using Bharti’s network in Delhi, with

local toll charges. With a new operator coming in, and both MTNL and Sterling

getting aggressive, Bharti will have a testing time this year.