SingTel Q3 profits, revenue fall on the back of investments in networks

Investments in networks, business expansion as well as weaker foreign currencies pushed SingTel's net profit down by 8 per cent to $827 million for the third quarter ended Dec 31.

Group revenue also fell 5 per cent to $4.6 billion. In Singapore, revenue grew 1 per cent to $1.7 billion driven by contributions from its new digital services and continued strength of its mobile and infocomm technology businesses.

Revenue from mobile services increased 3 per cent to $507 million as SingTel added 63,000 mobile customers in Singapore in the quarter. This brings its total customer base to 3.76 million as at Dec 31, making it the leading Singapore telco with a 46.6 per cent market share.

Among its key investments are plans to achieve islandwide coverage of the next-generation 4G networks in Singapore by the end of March this year.

In Australia, its subsidiary Optus extended its 4G coverage to Brisbane and the Gold Coast, and now covers major capital cities including Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth.

Optus is restructuring its business against a backdrop of an industry slowdown and mandated mobile termination rate cuts.

The Group's regional mobile associates, in particular Telkomsel in Indonesia and Thailand's AIS, recorded robust growth, which were partially offset by lower earnings from Bharti Airtel in India and the weaker regional currencies.

Pre-tax earnings grew 1 per cent to $455 million and would have increased 11 per cent if exchange rates were unchanged from a year ago.

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