Malaysia-based telecoms group Axiata has released its financial results for the three months ended 30 June 2009, posting a 44% year-on-year increase in net profit for the quarter on the back of foreign exchange gains and what it called ‘better operational contribution’. Net profit for the quarter was MYR526.8 million (USD148.7 million), up from MYR366.6 million a year earlier, with Axiata reporting pre-tax forex gains of MYR532.1 million compared to a MYR11.5 million pre-tax forex loss reported in the same period a year earlier. Despite the improved results, net profit for the company in the six months to 30 June 2009 has declined 23% year-on-year, again attributed to foreign exchange losses and weaker performances from its international subsidiaries in the first fiscal quarter of the year. Revenue for 2Q09, meanwhile, rose 8% y-o-y to MYR3.16 billion, and Malaysian mobile operator Cellcom remains the biggest contributor to group revenue, generating 50% of the total at end-June 2009, compared to 47% a year earlier. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) for the quarter was MYR1.24 billion, up from MYR1.22 billion a year earlier.
The group’s total subscriber base climbed to 99.2 million at the end of June 2009, up 98% compared to the 50 million it reported at the same date a year earlier. Despite being responsible for the lion’s share of the group’s revenue, Cellcom only accounts for 9.7% of all Axiata’s subscribers, with a customer base of 9.69 million. Indian mobile operator Idea Cellular, in which Axiata holds a 14.99% direct stake, continues to dwarf its other interests, with 42.8% of the group’s total users, equivalent to approximately 42.8 million subscribers.