Kuwaiti communications group Wataniya Telecom has reported a 32% increase in profits year-on-year for the first nine months of 2005, to KWD39.2 million (USD133.5 million). The company’s total active customer base grew by 33% in the three months to the end of September to 5.209 million, pushing quarterly revenues up 16% to KWD97.1 million, from KWD83.5 million in the second quarter. Alongside its domestic mobile business, Wataniya also has operations in Iraq, Algeria, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia.
In Kuwait Wataniya’s customer base reached 928,444, up from 906,255 at the end of June. Its Tunisian subsidiary Tunisiana took 80% of all new customers in the country in the period to up its market share to 40%, whilst Asia-Cell in Iraq increased its subscriber base to 1.1 million following the expansion of its network to the capital Baghdad early in the quarter. Wataniya Telecom Algeria near-doubled its customer base to 1.164 million, whilst the group’s newly-launched Maldives operator Wataniya Telecom Maldives signed up 10,198 users following the launch of its GSM/GPRS/EDGE network on 1 August.