Strong growth in Myanmar lifts Telenor earnings

23 Jul 2015

Norway-based Telenor Group has reported a strong 57% increase in net income for the second quarter, lifted by a stronger than expected performance in Myanmar.

The operator reported a net income of 3.6 billion knoner ($441.2 million), on the back of a 6% increase in revenue to 30.2 billion kroner.

Telenor’s Myanmar mobile operations brought in total revenue of 1.14 billion kroner. The company added 3.1 million new subscriptions during the quarter to take its total up to 9.4 million.

Of these, 55% were active data users, demonstrating just how rapidly the mobile market is developing from an almost non-existent state just a few years ago.

“In Myanmar, performance continues to exceed our expectations. In July we passed 10 million subscribers. Customers’ strong demand for voice and data services keeps driving revenues and profitability,” Telenor CEO Jon Fredrik Baksaas said.

“During the quarter we further expanded the network, reaching 213 of a total of 330 townships at the end of June. The speed of our network expansion is the key challenge in a nation where approximately 70% of the population lives in rural areas.”

Telenor’s Thai subsidiary Dtac meanwhile increased its revenue by 26.8% to 5.11 billion kroner, despite losing 1.5 million subscribers due to the regulatory requirement to register all pre-paid subscribers and cut off any remaining unregistered SIMs.

Telenor said competition in the Thai mobile market remained intense during the second quarter, with ARPU in local currency falling 4% as a result.

The company’s Indian operations reported 9% higher revenue of 1.18 billion kroner, with the addition of 1.3 million new customers more than making up for a 12% decline in ARPU in constant currency.

“Based on the performance in the first half of the year and our expectations for the rest of the year, we maintain our guidance for 2015,” Baksaas said. He is due to be replaced as group CEO by Sigve Brekke, currently the head of Telenor’s Asian operations, in August.

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