AIS’ falling profits tell tale of fierce competition

26 Feb 2007

Advanced Info Services (AIS), Thailand’s leading mobile operator, has reported a 35% fall in fourth-quarter net income, and a 13% drop in profit for the full year, citing an industry price war and rising costs. AIS posted 4Q net profit of THB3.2 billion (USD96 million), down from THB4.95 billion in the same period a year earlier and THB3.65 billion in the third quarter, whilst full-year net earnings came in at THB16.3 billion against a forecast of THB16.7 billion, down from THB18.73 billion in 2005. AIS gained a net 1.8 million new customers in the fourth quarter to finish the year with a total of 19.5 million GSM users. It claimed to have a 50% market share at the end of December, following the launch of aggressive promotions after a net subscriber loss in 3Q caused its share to slip to 48%. AIS, backed by Shin Corp and SingTel, competes with second placed DTAC, majority owned by Norway’s Telenor, and third-ranked True Move, controlled by domestic firm True Corp.

Thailand, Advanced Info Service (AIS)