Singapore’s second largest mobile operator MobileOne (M1) posted a 25.7% rise in its first quarter net profit, despite losing market share to third-placed rival StarHub. Whilst M1’s hold on the market shrank to 30.7%, from 32.2% a year earlier, its net profit in the three months to the end of March 2004 was up SGD9.6 million to SGD47 million, mainly due to a cut in corporate tax rates. The cellco said that handset promotions resulted in a 0.5% fall in revenues to SGD182.2 million, though post paid monthly ARPU rose SGD0.90 to SGD61.40. M1 finished March with 1.106 million customers, up 38,000 on the start of the year.
M1 has also announced that it is to start consumer trials of 3G services around August with a view to launching commercial services in October or November, before the regulator’s end of year deadline. The cellco is currently engaged in internal testing and has pledged 65% of this year’s SGD150 million capital expenditure to its 3G rollout.