Israeli cellco Partner Communications has reported financial results for the three months ended 31 December 2008, revealing a drop in both net profit and revenue. For the three-month period revenues fell 4% year-on-year to ILS1.6 billion (USD411 million), while net profit dropped 12.3% to ILS265 million. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBTIDA) however increased, rising 12.7% y-o-y to ILS559 million. For the full-year period results were more positive, with the cellco reporting growth in all areas. Revenue for the twelve-month period to 31 December 2008 increased 3.5% against the previous year to ILS6.3 billion. Net income for fiscal year 2008 was ILS1.1 billion, up 11.9%, while full-year EBITDA rose 12.3% to ILS2.3 billion. Partner has said that earnings may continue to fall in 2009 if the global economic downturn continues. It has also said that it will consider cost-cutting measure in the coming months as its looks to limit the effect of any slump. Partner’s chief financial officer Emanuel Avner noted, ‘Our intention is to mitigate, as much as possible, the effects of the downturn through efficiency and cost-cutting measures where appropriate,’ adding, ‘However, should the downturn continue through 2009, profit levels could be lower than in 2008.’
Partner revealed it added 16,000 subscribers over the last quarter of 2008, bringing its total customer base to 2.9 million, and estimated that it held a 31.3% market share at that date. Average revenue per user (ARPU) increased slightly in 2008, rising from ILS158 per month in 2007 to ILS159. Average minutes of use (MOU) also rose, up 8.6% over the year to 365.