Telemar back in the black thanks to tax break

30 Jan 2004

Brazilian telecoms group Tele Norte Leste Participaçoes (known locally as Telemar) has reported profits of BRL213 million (USD72.7 million) in 2003, with a one-off tax break helping reverse the BRL416 million loss it reported in 2002. Gross revenues were up 20.7% year-on-year to BRL19.4 billion, thanks to a strong performance from mobile operator Oi, whose own revenues leapt 180% to BRL1.35 billion as it finished 2003 with 3.9 million subscribers, up from 1.4 million at the start of the year. Other strong performances came from the group’s long-distance business, with turnover up 43.4%, and a 30.7% increase in data revenues. An extraordinary tax benefit of BRL524 million in the fourth quarter helped push profit for the year back into the black. The telco added 72,000 fixed lines in the year to take its total to 15.1 million, whilst the customer base of broadband business Velox grew 428% to 217,000. Telemar reduced its net debt by 14.1% over the course of the year, to BRL1.29 billion.

Brazil, Oi