Posts filed under ‘Financial’
French communications and entertainment group Vivendi reported a 23.7% year-on-year rise in consolidated revenues (22.1% at constant currency) to EUR6.5 billion (USD8.83 billion), as a result of strong performance from the likes of telecoms arm SFR and expected synergies delivered following recent acquisitions. Group EBITDA reached EUR1.4 billion, an increase of 15.8% (13.8% at constant currency) compared to the first quarter of 2008. Vivendi said adjusted net income was EUR649 million, down EUR48 million compared to the first quarter of 2008, mainly due to the increasing interest and share of earnings attributable to minority interests. Nonetheless, the company confirmed its 2009 outlook for strong growth of EBITA.
SFR’s revenues increased to EUR3.028 billion in the three months ended 31 March 2009, up by 31.5% compared to the same period in 2008, due to the consolidation of neuf Cegetel since 15 April 2008. On a comparable basis, SFR’s revenues decreased by 0.8% y-o-y, although excluding the impact of the decrease in switched voice revenues and equipment sales, SFR revenues increased by 1.4%, it said. Mobile turnover generated EUR2.181 billion in sales which Vivendi said was ‘stable’ due to a EUR22 million decrease in equipment sales to EUR77 million. Mobile service revenues, however, rose 1.2% year-on-year to EUR2.104 billion, driven by growth of the customer base and a sharp (36%) rise in data revenues following the launch of unlimited SMS and MMS offers, and strong development of mobile internet services in the mass market and enterprise segments. SFR added 118,000 net new mobile customers in January-March, equivalent to 51% of net additions in the period. Furthermore, SFR reported an improvement in its customer mix (+3.5 percentage points year-on-year to 69.6%), adding 178,000 new post-paid customers in the period to achieve 13.76 million contract customers at the end of March 2009. SFR launched the iPhone on 8 April, and says it has already sold 120,000 handsets.
SFR (including neuf Cegetel) reported broadband internet and fixed revenues of EUR934 million in 1Q09, down 2.7% compared to the same period in 2008 on a comparable basis. Broadband internet and fixed revenues increased by 2.3%, excluding the impact of the decrease in switched voice revenues. Aided by the launch of the ‘neufbox by SFR’, SFR added 163,000 net new broadband internet active customers in the period (or >30% of all quarterly net additions). At the end of March 2009 SFR’s broadband subscriber base totalled 4.042 million, up 9.3% compared to the same period in 2008. In addition, SFR had 164,000 Enterprise data links connected to the SFR network, 10.1% higher than a year earlier. SFR’s broadband internet and fixed EBITDA, including neuf Cegetel’s operations since 15 April 2008, decreased by EUR19 million on a comparable basis to EUR133 million.
Ukrainian wireless network operator life:) has published its results for the three months ended 31 March 2009, showing an annual 22.3% increase in subscribers to 11.5 million. Of the total, 8 million were deemed by the operator to be ‘active’, having made or received a call/SMS in the last three months. Revenues in the first quarter of 2009 were USD79.1 million, a 12.3% decrease compared to the same period of 2008. EBITDA was USD3.6 million, compared to USD2.1 million in the same period of 2008, while net losses were USD24.4 million, down from a loss of USD32.4 million in Q1 2008. General director of life:) Tansu Yegen said: ‘The first quarter of 2009 has been very challenging for the economy of Ukraine with the worsening macroeconomic situation seriously effecting the business. The national currency depreciated by around 52% against the US dollar as of 31 March 2009 compared to a year ago, although remained stable compared to the previous quarter.’
Mobilkom Macedonia (VIP Mobile) doubled its revenues in the first quarter of this year, according to the financial report published by its parent Telekom Austria. In the three months under review VIP Mobile reported revenues of EUR3.9 million (USD5.3 million), compared with EUR1.8 million in the same time period last year. The strong rise was attributed to ‘high subscription fees’ as well as a significant increase in the number of customers on its books. Nevertheless, the company posted a net pre-tax loss of EUR4.3 million in the first three months of 2009, down from a loss of EUR6 million in the same time period last year. VIP Mobile, the third largest mobile operator in the Republic of Macedonia by subscribers, had 213,000 customers by 31 March 2009, compared to 163,300 customers a year earlier. The number of subscribers has declined from 242,000 at the end of December 2008 however, as a result of the firm removing inactive customers from its base.
Turkey’s leading mobile operator by subscribers, Turkcell, has reported revenues of USD1.28 billion for the first quarter of 2009, an 18.5% year-on-year decline attributed by the cellco to depreciation of the Turkish lira against the US dollar. EBITDA for the three months ended 31 March fell by 18.2% to USD472 million, compared to USD577 million in the same period a year earlier. Net income was down 29.3% to USD344.2 million from USD486.8 million in 1Q 2008. ‘I am very pleased that Turkcell’s technology leadership, improved efficiency and customer focus resulted in solid financial results in the first quarter of 2009 despite the global economic downturn,’ Turkcell CEO Sureyya Ciliv said, ‘We plan to build on our strengths in technology, efficiency, and customer service. We are particularly excited about launching 3G services in Turkey within three months.’ The company added 1.3 million net new customers in the quarter, with 36.4 million users at the end of March.
French mobile operator Bouygues Telecom posted a 6% increase in sales for the three months to 31 March 2009 on the back of solid subscriber growth. Sales from network services grew 5% year-on-year to EUR1.175 billion (USD1.603 billion), including a EUR9 million contribution from its fixed line business, it said. Bouygues added a net 144,000 new mobile customers in the first quarter of 2009, compared with 51,000 in the first quarter of 2008. As at 31 March 2009, Bouygues Telecom’s cellular user base totalled 9.739 million, of which 7.348 million were on post-paid contracts — 75.5% of the total customer base — a year-on-year increase of 1.7 percentage points.
Clearwire, the US wireless broadband operator 51% owned by Sprint Nextel, has reported a narrowing of first-quarter losses to USD71.06 million, compared to a pro forma loss of USD76.44 million a year earlier (before Sprint and Clearwire unveiled their USD12 billion partnership to combine their planned nationwide mobile WiMAX networks). Revenue in the three months to the end of March 2009 rose 21% year-on-year to USD62.1 million. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, Clearwire provides broadband internet services in at least 50 markets nationwide via fixed wireless networks which utilise a combination of pre-WiMAX and true 802.16e mobile WiMAX technologies. Clearwire, which has so far launched commercial WiMAX in Baltimore and Portland, Oregon, reported that it added 25,000 subscribers in the first quarter, bringing its total base to 500,000 (up 57,000 year-on-year). The firm expects to add 802.16e networks in Atlanta, Las Vegas, Chicago, Charlotte, Dallas/Fort Worth, Honolulu, Philadelphia and Seattle during 2009. The company said yesterday that it still plans to expand its ‘Clear 4G’ WiMAX service to 80 markets covering a potential 120 million customers by the end of 2010 but the plan could be altered depending on the availability of capital.
Also announced yesterday, Clearwire has selected Cisco as its national core infrastructure provider as it expands mobile WiMAX network coverage across the US. Clearwire’s all-IP network will be upgraded and extended under the deal, whilst separately, Cisco is also planning to move into the mobile WiMAX terminal device manufacturing market this year.
Greek telecommunica group Cosmote has reportedly reached an agreement with Saudi Oger over the takeover of Romanian mobile operator Zapp, Business Standard Romania reports. Cosmote will pay a “little over” EUR 200 million for 100 percent of Telemobil shares, the company that owns Zapp Romania, and is expected to sign the deal next month. With this acquisition, Cosmote aims to obtain Zapp’s 3G licence for its Romanian subsidiary Cosmote Romania, which is the only Romanian mobile operator without a UMTS concession.