BT Ireland has reported a 7% rise in revenues for its fiscal year ended 31 March 2007, with sales reaching EUR1.09 billion (USD1.47 billion) compared to EUR1.02 billion in 2005-06. The company said the growth was driven by new business which was up 41% year-on-year and accounted for 28% of the group’s total turnover. BT signed up several high profile corporate and public sector contracts in the year including Airtricity, Element 6, Irish Dairy Board, Loyaltybuild, Bank of Scotland (Ireland), Enable Ireland and Regional Theatre Management System for the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (NI). BT Ireland is focusing efforts on the SME sector as well as foregrounding the development of its retail broadband business. The number of people with high speed internet access connections in Northern Ireland increased by 45% to 107,000 in the year to 31 March, while in the Republic, residential broadband connections more than doubled to 62,000. Elsewhere, BT’s wholesale division performed strongly, reporting more than 250,000 households and businesses in Northern Ireland were taking broadband services provided over the BT network.
Commenting on the company’s year end results its CEO Danny McLaughlin said: ‘We are seeing the benefits of running our business on an all island basis. The integration of our operations North and South has given us access to better economies of scale and we now have an excellent platform for growth.’ He went on to say that the firm’s persistent lobbying for improved local loop unbundling (LLU) in the Republic was ‘paying dividends’ and that consumers were waking up to the benefits in terms of pricing and products that are being enjoyed by their Northern Ireland counterparts.