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Netplus earmarks `300-cr capex for FY23

To focus on rural coverage

Netplus earmarks `300-cr capex for FY23

New Delhi: Broadband service provider Netplus has earmarked Rs 300 crore capital expenditure for the current financial year, out of which most of the investment will be made in expanding the network in rural areas, a senior company official said.

Netplus Broadband and Fastway Group CEO Prem Ojha said that besides laying its own optical fibre cable and setting up network equipment, the company has tied up with state-run Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL) to use its fibre for coverage in rural areas. "This year most of the investment that we will do, out of the total outlay for capex of almost Rs 300 crore, 75-80 per cent will go into expansion and the balance will be used to onboard new customers along with network operation and maintenance," Ojha said.

He said in urban areas the expense of port to connect 3-4 homes comes to around Rs 10,000 with 4-5 operators in these geographies competing for the same set of customers. However, incase of rural area the capital expenditure remains same but there is literally no competition and hence no churn. The company claims to have services in 3,000 villages of Punjab and 400 cities across the country. "This year our plan is to do almost 12,500 villages. In Punjab, we will be done with the rural expansion this year and of course will continue to serve customers there. But then Himachal and other places also we are going very aggressively," Ojha said.

He said that the company has tied up with BBNL on a revenue share basis. "We have just recently tied up with BBNL on a revenue share basis with them and we are expanding in all these areas. They have fibre connecting almost 2.5 lakh villages across the country. So for us, time is saved and we can launch the services instantly," Ojha said. In terms of customer base, the company is targeting to increase subscribers in the range of 7-8 lakh this year and over 1 million in the next financial year to be among top 5 broadband service providers in the country, he said.

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