StarHub's Q1 net profit falls 7.7% on lower revenue

SINGAPORE - StarHub said its net profit fell 7.7 per cent in the first quarter to $84.2 million from a year ago.

This was due to a one-off payment of taxes not provisioned for in 2012 and a lower government grant, which was to encourage take-up of fibre broadband services among consumers.

Revenue for the three months to March 31 slid 1.5 per cent to $571.4 million, largely due to a drop in the telco's broadband revenue and handset sales.

Broadband revenue during the quarter was $53.9 million, down 13.7 per cent. This was due to intense competition in the broadband market from new players, the telco explained.

Sales of equipment, comprising mainly phones, fell 15.7 per cent to $27.6 million.

Mobile revenue grew by 1.3 per cent to $305.9 million due to its post-paid mobile services, which saw an increase in customers to 1.23 million, up from 1,11 million a year ago.

Total mobile customer numbers stood at 2.35 million, up from 2.22 million.

StarHub's pay-TV revenue slipped by 1 per cent to $93.8 million, even though its customer base rose slightly by 1,000 to 533,000.

Lower subscription and advertising revenue were cited for the dip.

An interim cash dividend of five cents per share was declared for the first quarter, which will be paid out on May 30.

The telco intends to maintain its annual cash dividend payout of 20 cents a share for 2014.

StarHub shares closed one cent lower at $4.17 on Wednesday.

Its results were released after the market closed.