China Unicom said its net profit for the first nine months of the year grew a strong 53.6% to 8.37 billion yuan ($1.38 billion), due largely to strong mobile growth.
Revenue increased 17.9% to 220.17 billion yuan, with service revenue up 13.6% to 177.38 billion yuan.
Mobile service revenue increased 20.2% to 111.9 billion yuan, just over half of total revenue. China Unicom added 33.4 million new mobile customers during the nine-month period, taking its total to 272.7 million.
Unicom's 3G net additions were nearly 35.2 million, exceeding total net adds for the period, while total 3G customers reached 111.6 million. ARPU for 3G customers, at 76.5 yuan, was well ahead of the operator's overall mobile ARPU of 48.6 yuan.
By contrast, revenues from China Unicom's fixed line business grew a more modest 3.8% to 64.8 billion yuan. A 10% increase in broadband revenue made up for declining voice growth, and the percentage of broadband revenue to total fixed-line service revenue grew from 49.7% to 52.7%.
On the flip side, total expenses increased 17.5% to 209 billion yuan, due largely to increased spending on marketing due to intense market competition.
The tender is said to cover 34,000 FDD LTE base stations, 10,000 TD-LTE base stations and 8,000 FDD LTE small cells.