Telecom New Zealand has announced a positive set of first-quarter financial results, with revenues from mobile services helping to boost overall turnover by 5.3% to NZD1.39 billion. While net income was up 19% to NZD193 million in the three months to the end of September, from NZD162 million in the same period last year, EBITDA was unchanged at NZD554 million.
Sales at Telecom’s mobile unit were up 12.9% year-on-year to NZD166 million, with the company’s CDMA network now bringing in 85% of total cellular revenues. Income from mobile data services was up 120% to NZD22 million. Monthly ARPU levels were up 5.2% from last year to NZD36.40. Telecom had almost 1.37 million mobile subscribers at the end of September, rising from just over 1.3 million at the start of the year; 756,000 of these were CDMA customers. The telco is planning to launch its high speed CDMA2000 1x EV-DO networks in several cities next week, giving New Zealanders their first taste of 3G services.
The group’s local access business saw revenues fall 1.1% to NZD267 million and income from calls dropped 8.5% to NZD227 million, but sales at Telecom’s data, internet and solutions business jumped 44.4% to NZD244 million. The company had 139,000 broadband customers at the end of September, up from 79,000 twelve months earlier, while the number of main access lines fell slightly to just under 1.8 million.
The group’s Australian operations brought in NZD353 million, down from NZD374 million a year before, thanks largely to a 30% fall in the number of cellular subscribers to 179,000 as customers were transferred to other networks as part of a strategy to move away from stand-alone mobile products.
Telecom has reiterated its forecast of full-year profit of NZD816 million in the current financial year which ends next June.