Hong Kong’s Hutchison Whampoa saw its net profit for the last financial year rise 47% to HK$20 billion ($2.6 billion) as its 3 Group of companies finally turned in a positive showing.
The 3 Group, which offers 3G services in Australia and Europe, turned its first operating profit of HK$2.9 billion before taxes. The Group had been reporting losses since it started business in 2003, and had turned in a loss of HK$8.9 billion for 2009.
All operations in the 3 Group had achieved profit before taxes and interest in the second half of last year, with the exception of the Group’s Ireland business. The 3 Group saw a 13% increase in its number of customers to 29.6 million, with the number of mobile broadband customers rising 32% to 6 million.
Hutchison Whampoa’s telecom business in Indonesia, Vietnam and Sri Lanka reported a pre tax and interest loss of HK$2.69 billion,despite a 101% increase in customer base to 25.7 million.
Hong Kong and Macau contributed HK$775 million in net profit, a 61% increase from 2009, as the customer base for the region reached 3.2 million at the end of 2010.
Hutchison Whampoa's 3 Group has operations in Australia (as half of the 50:50 joint venture VHA), Indonesia, Austria, Denmark and Sweden, Ireland, Italy and the UK.