MobilCom turns the corner: shares up on strength of mobile gains

13 Aug 2003

Buedelsdorf-based telecoms service provider MobilCom [MBLCF.PK] reported a return to profit at its core mobile business for the three-month period to 30 June, reversing a trend of eleven straight quarterly losses. The group, which narrowly escaped bankruptcy last year when it was bailed out by the German government and then had its debt removed by shareholder France Télécom [FTE.PA], posted net income of EUR3.6 million, compared with a loss of EUR172.8 million for the corresponding period of 2002, despite a drop in the number of subscribers to its services. In the three months to the end of June the company lost 300,000 users to end the period with around 4.2 million cellular subscribers, however it was quick to point out that some of the drop was the result of it terminating less profitable accounts. MobilCom’s wireless business posted pre-tax earnings of EUR4.8 million, from a loss of EUR135.7 million a year ago on revenues of EUR329 million (from EUR368 million), leading some analysts to raise full-year forecasts and sparking a rise in the company’s share price. Group sales dipped to EUR446.9 million from EUR519.9 million a year ago.