South African incumbent Telkom SA reported a 35% increase in fiscal first-half headline earnings, thanks to cost cutting measures and continued strong growth at its 50%-owned mobile unit Vodacom. Telkom said in a statement that headline earnings per share in the six months to the end of September increased to ZAR7.759, up from ZAR5.749 in the corresponding period of 2004. The group reported 9.9% growth in operating revenues to ZAR23.456 billion and a 37.3% rise in operating profit to ZAR7.517 billion. Pan-African mobile group Vodacom was again Telkom’s star performer, increasing its total customer base by 42% to 19.1 million in the period. Telkom did not pay an interim dividend but said it bought back 12.1 million shares worth ZAR1.5 billion.