Thaicom says iPSTAR will break even this year

16 May 2008

Thaicom , Thailand's only satellite operator, said its broadband satellite business IPSTAR should break even this year, driven by sales in China and new overseas markets.

A Reuters report said the company maintained a 2008 revenue growth target of 30% and said it expected China to contribute more sales in the second half.

'We plan to launch new services in four countries, South Korea, Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia, this year. And if our promotions in India and China work, that will help boost sales much higher,' chief finance officer Tanadit Charoenchan, quoted by the Reuters report, said.

The $400-million IPSTAR, the world's largest broadband satellite, provides high-speed internet and telecom services in seven countries, including Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam, Cambodia and China.

Thaicom earlier unveiled results and more than doubled its first quarter net profit to 280 million baht helped by a leap in sales of IPSTAR user terminals to 20,957 from 9,131 in the first quarter of last year.

Thaicom aims to sell 100,000-140,000 user terminals by the end of this year, up from 100,000 in 2007, Tanadit said.

Of that, China should contribute 10,000 unit sales after Thaicom expanded into retail markets in China in the second half, the Reuters report further said.

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