Total remuneration of Bharti Airtel chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal remained almost flat at about Rs 30.19 crore in 2017-18 compared to the previous year as the company reported the lowest annual profit in a decade at Rs 1,099 crore for the year.
However, the remuneration of Bharti Airtel Managing Director and CEO Gopal Vittal increased by around 37 per cent to Rs 16.97 crore on account of increase in salary and stocks option, according to the company's report.
Mittal's total remuneration from Airtel was Rs 30.14 crore and Vittal was paid Rs 12.4 crore in 2016-17.
Bharti Airtel granted average increase of 7.1 per cent in the remuneration of employees excluding key managerial (KMP) during 2017-18 and the average increase in the remuneration of KMPs was 14.84 per cent.
During the year 2017-18, Airtel permanent workforce reduced by around 800 to 8,453 from 9,279 in 2016-17.
"The telecom industry faced an extraordinarily turbulent year in India through unprecedented disruption," Mittal said in the report.
He said that extreme pricing pressure accelerated market exits and industry consolidation, which evolved towards a 3 plus 1 structure which is three private telcom operators and onr public sector firm.
"Even though the transition is turning out to be stressful entailing massive dislocation in the short run, the new industry structure will ultimately prove beneficial for the sector," Mittal said.
While total customer base of the company continued to rise every year to reach the highest ever level of 413 million at the end of 2017-18, the consolidated revenue of the company was the lowest in last four fiscal years at Rs 83,688 crore at the end of March 2018.
Mittal said strategy of Airtel is to grow share of high average revenue per user (ARPU) customers and improving customer stickiness by offering new products.
"Aggressive network rollout continued to be an overriding priority for us as a record 110,000 mobile sites were rolled out during the year to strengthen our 4G footprint," he said.
He said it was gratifying to see the way Airtel held itself as pressure mounted on the topline of mobility business.
Vittal said to grow share of high ARPU customers, Airtel focussed on grabbing increased share of 4G devices through alliances and simplified pricing, driving data consumption through intense focus on SIM consolidation led by bundled pricing plans and increasing postpaid connection adoption.