GP heading towards a record year [ Business ] 20/10/2017
GP heading towards a record year
Q3 profits up 6.7pc
GP heading towards a record year
Grameenphone, the country's leading mobile operator, is on course to logging in its highest ever profit in its 20-year history on the back of a healthy growth in internet subscription and operational efficiency.

The operator recorded Tk 700 crore as profit for the third quarter to take the tally so far this year to Tk 2,146 crore. Grameenphone's highest profit was registered last year: Tk 2,250 crore.

The profit for the third quarter is an increase of 6.70 percent from a year earlier but is 11.39 percent lower than the previous quarter.

“The quarter was a particularly challenging one due to heavy rainfall and the disastrous flooding that affected much of the country,” said Michael Patrick Foley, chief executive officer of Grameenphone.

The industry continued to be very competitive on a number of fronts, including subscriber acquisition.

“Nevertheless, we delivered growth both in data and voice segments,” he said, adding that strong retail execution and competitive offers contributed to close to 30 lakh new data subscribers.

During the quarter, Grameenphone's data customers hit the landmark of 3 crore, which is 46.9 percent of the operator's total subscriber base.

At the end of September, its active subscribers stood at 6.39 crore, up 3.7 percent from the previous quarter.

The operator recorded Tk 3,320 crore as revenue for the third quarter, up 12.92 percent from a year earlier.

“The healthy growth in our revenue generating subscriber base, price stability in voice segment and ongoing operational efficiency programmes are all contributing in value creation for our shareholders,” said Karl Erik, Grameenphone's chief financial officer.

 

Grameenphone invested Tk 210 crore during the quarter mainly for further rollout of 3G sites and capacity enhancement. Some 154 2G and 284 3G sites were rolled out, taking the cumulative site numbers to 12,517 for 2G and 11,841 for 3G.

“The results point to the significant upside opportunity in the Bangladeshi telecom industry particularly in mobile data services,” Foley said.

About the forthcoming rollout of 4G services, he said the potential for 4G to spur economic growth and enhance the competitiveness of the economy is considerable.

The telecom regulator has already issued the 4G guideline last month and the Association of Mobile Telecom Operators of Bangladesh has raised 23 concerns about it.

Grameenphone is committed to meaningful consultations between the industry and government for the creation of a set of 4G licence and spectrum auction guidelines that will strengthen investor confidence in the regulatory and fiscal policies, its CEO said.

“This will facilitate widespread and affordable data services for people of the country and strengthen investor confidence and appetite for the material investments required for the launch of 4G,” he added.

The lone-listed mobile operator's earnings per share for the quarter stood at Tk 5.16, up from Tk 4.78 a year earlier.

Grameenphone shares traded at Tk 424 yesterday, up 0.93 percent from the previous day.
 
 
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