Bharti Airtel’s Africa operations, Airtel Africa, on Friday posted 36.6 per cent decline in profit after tax on reported currency basis at USD 145 million (Rs 1,066 crore) for September quarter 2020.

The company had posted a profit after tax of USD 228 million in the same period a year ago.

Airtel Africa, however, recorded a growth of 19.5 per cent to USD 472 million in operating profit on constant currency basis, the company said in a statement.

The revenue of the company increased 10.7 per cent to USD 1,815 million during the quarter under review from USD 1,640 million in the corresponding quarter of 2019-20.

Airtel Africa CEO Raghunath Mandava said the first half of current fiscal year included the peak impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the countries.

“Importantly, the fundamentals of our business remain strong and revenue growth further benefited from the execution of our strategy with a specific focus on expanding distribution in the rural areas, investing in our network and increasing 4G coverage, as well as benefiting from the fact we provide an essential service to consumer,” he said.

Mandava said that as the lockdown restrictions eased during the second quarter, Airtel Africa’s performance continued to improve with constant currency revenue growth of 19.6 per cent, up 6.6 per cent from the previous quarter.

“In Q2, performance in our mobile money business also significantly improved with constant currency revenue growth of 33.9 per cent, up 8 per cent from prior quarter, as lockdown restrictions were eased and fees on certain transactions, which had been previously waived, were largely reintroduced,” Mandava said.