In Q2, Celcom surpasses RM2-bil revenue mark for first time
By Digital News Asia September 16, 2013
- Registers 29th consecutive quarter of revenue growth; total RM4 billion for first half of 2013
- Records 1.1 million mobile broadband subscribers; mobile Internet revenue grew by 44% in first half
CELCOM Axiata Berhad saw quarterly revenue for April to June 2013 hit RM2.01 billion, the first time in the company’s history it passed the quarterly RM2-billion mark, bringing the total to RM3.99 billion for the year to date (YTD), which represented a year-on-year improvement of 4.3%.
It also saw quarterly normalised EBITDA (Earnings before Income, Depreciation, Tax and Amortisation) crossing the RM900-million mark for the first time (at RM903 million), bringing the total for the first half of 2013 to RM1.78 billion with a margin of 44.5%, the company said in a statement.
This was complemented by a quarterly PATAMI (Profit After Tax And Minority Interest) of RM577 million, a 5.1% improvement from last quarter’s figure of RM549 million, bringing operational PATAMI for the first half of 2013 to RM1.13 billion with a margin of 28.2%.
[RM1 = US$0.30]
Both margins were reinforced by smarter-spend initiatives, better asset management, productivity improvement programmes, as well as segmented, cost-efficient marketing initiatives, Celcom claimed.
“Celcom’s focus on delivering higher value to segmented customers, enhancing network quality, and diversifying product and service offerings have proven beneficial yet again in our 29th quarter of revenue growth,” said its chief executive officer Shazalli Ramly (pic).
“Solid productivity improvement initiatives, more efficient marketing tools, and asset sweating have resulted in a highly commendable quarterly revenue and margin in line with targets set by Axiata Group Berhad,” he said at a recent media briefing to announce its results.
Including mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) under its network, Celcom said it had the highest subscriber share in the industry with total subscribers at almost 14 million for the first time since the start of its transformation programme.
It also reported 1.1 million mobile broadband subscribers, contributing RM521 million in revenue, which represented a year-on-year (YoY) growth of 18.6%.
While SMS revenue continued its gradual decline in line with industry trends, Celcom’s other non-voice services including broadband and mobile Internet, digital services, and M2M (machine-to-machine) services contributed almost a quarter of YTD revenue at 24.2% from 22.8% a year ago, underscoring the increased focus on data as a key driver of growth, the company said.
Data revenue, which consisted of broadband and mobile Internet, stood at RM647 million for the first half, an increase of 16.1% YoY pushed by steadfast growth in mobile Internet revenue that grew 44% YoY.
Celcom said smartphones on its network climbed to 3.57 million, representing close to 28% of its mobile customers and a 16% quarter-on-quarter from 3.08 million previously, aided by aggressive sales drives for new device launches and bundles which pushed device sales to RM128 million YTD (an increase of 117.4% YoY).
Similarly, the number of tablets on the network rose to 271,000 with a 23.1% quarter-on-quarter growth.
“The establishment of key strategic partnerships this year including for bandwidth sharing, network infrastructure, digital content, and entertainment services will provide even more value to our customers,” Shazalli said.
Celcom will continue its focus on digital services underlined by a new venture into mobile personal entertainment through its new subsidiary Escape Axiata Berhad, accompanied by the introduction of three new e-commerce portals Bachabooku, Buzzaar, and The Crescent last month, as well as a strategic partnership with Huawei to provide enhanced mobile digital content for its customers.
These recent launches accompanied thematic campaigns centred on the month of Ramadan and Hari Raya Aidilfitri by The Cube as well as new app and music offerings such as Mobiroo and Musicube Mini.
Celcom said its current 4G LTE (Fourth Generation Long-Term Evolution) deployment plans are on track and it aims to reach 30% of the population by the end of Q2 2014, covering 33 strategic districts nationwide including Klang Valley, Johor Bahru, and Penang, as well as Kota Baru, Kuala Terengganu, Langkawi, Ipoh, Kuantan, Malacca, Kota Kinabalu, and Kuching.
Celcom is also spending RM420 million of its capex (capital expenditure) budget to enhance its nationwide network for LTE deployment.
Celcom will continue its investments in its mobile network, resulting in fast data connections through an expanding LTE network complemented by its current HSPA+ (3G) speeds of up to 42Mbps in urban centres.
The telco has completed its nationwide network upgrade exercise and is currently focusing on key Klang Valley upgrades due for completion at the end of the year that it said would seamlessly integrate its 2G, 3G, and LTE back-end infrastructure for optimal customer experience and efficient asset utilisation.
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