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FINANCIAL CHRONICLE™ » FINANCIAL CHRONICLE™ » SLT, Mobitel ring strong growth in 1Q

SLT, Mobitel ring strong growth in 1Q

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1SLT, Mobitel ring strong growth in 1Q Empty SLT, Mobitel ring strong growth in 1Q Fri May 15, 2015 8:50 am

Melissa Pereira


Assistant Vice President - Equity Analytics
Assistant Vice President - Equity Analytics
Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) yesterday said during the first quarter of 2015 the Group has been able to report impressive financial performance resulting from good growth in revenue generations coupled with cost management initiatives.

Strategic initiatives taken across the group such as capacity expansions, new product offerings, and reaching new market segments the revenue of all major segments of the group have grown, with an overall group revenue growth of 9% year-on-year to Rs. 16.7 b during the first quarter of 2015. Mobitel’s outstanding performance was significant to the growth. 


Group EBITDA  (Earnings Before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortisation) was up by 34% to Rs. 5.6 b while EBITDA margin has improved to 33.3% compared to 27.2% of same quarter of the year before. In contrast to increase of revenue, remaining of operating cost at the same level of previous year, at Rs. 11.1 b, was reflected in EBITDA improvements. 


Group net profit increased to Rs. 1.68 b with a remarkable year on year growth of 207%. The increase was mainly driven by improvements in EBITDA, surpassing a negative impact of finance related cost increased by about Rs. 391 m in absolute terms. 
Despite the constant challenges on fixed line voice service, the holding company SLT has been able to record Rs. 9.87Bn revenue with a 5% growth during the first quarter of 2015, compared to same period of the year before. The growth was driven by local non-voice revenue streams such as data and broadband, enterprise, SME, wholesales sectors and IPTV. Introduction of a high capacity IPTV system, expansions in broadband and data services, investments in infrastructure developments, etc. have largely contributed to the revenue growth. 


Operating cost of the company remained 6% below from the same quarter of the previous year resulting from effective cost controls apart from the impact to the operating cost of the previous year by one time charge resulting from an out-of-court settlement of a civil litigation. 


Company EBITDA grew by 45% year on year to Rs. 2.9 b while EBITDA margin moved up to 30% from 21.4% the year before. Company net profit for the first quarter of 2015 increased to Rs. 700 m from Rs. 36 m in same period last year with exceptional growth owing to improvements to EBITDA.


SLT Group Chairman P.G. Kumarasinghe Sirisena expressed his pleasure on the impressive performance and assured all stakeholders of driving the Group towards a sustainable growth aligning to the national agenda. “SLT is committed to serve as a catalyst in establishing the national communication backbone and future IT infrastructure which will serve as the foundation of nearly all other sectors,” he said. 


SLT Group CEO Dileepa Wijesundera while emphasising his trust in skills of his team stated that the performance during the first quarter of 2015 had proven the strong presence of the company within the market. He expects to mitigate the time taken to reach the capabilities which are created through large investment projects, to the market by way of services, so that customers will be more benefitted while maximising the returns on it investments to the company.


Mobitel continued to grow its revenue despite industry challenges. Revenue for the first quarter of 2014 grew by 12% to Rs. 8.1 b compared to the same quarter in the previous year. The revenue growth was mainly due to continued growth in voice services not withstanding industry slowdown. Also it was aptly supported by the continuous growth in data services which is the future of the mobile industry. This encouraging growth is a result of the continuous investments made in latest technology, capacity enhancements and coverage expansion providing the customer a better experience with Mobitel. 


Backed by the robust growth in revenue which is an increase by Rs. 838 m compared to first quarter of 2014, Mobitel was able to record a growth in all key profitability indicators. When comparing the first quarter performance it is observed that company EBITDA and EBIT has grown by 20% and 81% respectively YoY. 


The company’s net profit for the first quarter of 2015 was recorded at Rs. 1 b compared to a net profit of Rs. 0.6 b in the first quarter of 2014. Thus the growth in net profit during the period is appreciable compared to same period in last year. This is attributable to the growth in EBITDA and EBIT (Earnings Before Interest, Tax) as well as favourable macro conditions that prevailed during the period. 

Courtesy: Daily Financial times 15 May 2015

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