Vodacom interim profit falls 98.4%

9 Nov 2009

South African mobile group Vodacom has reported net profit of ZAR59 million (USD7.78 million) for the six months ended 30 September 2009, down 98.4% from ZAR3.77 billion in the same period a year earlier. The operator said that earnings were hit by a ZAR3.2 billion impairment loss relating to its acquisition of pan-African satellite firm Gateway in December 2008. Revenues for the period were up from ZAR26.09 billion in 1H08, to ZAR28.67 billion a year later while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) grew 8% year-on-year, up to ZAR9.35 billion. ‘If I look at the future, the macroeconomic outlook is uncertain but we are seeing early signs of recovery specifically in South Africa,’ Pieter Uys, Vodacom’s CEO said in a conference call, adding, ‘But it is too soon to be confident in a sustained recovery across all customer segments.’ The firm succeeded in adding customers to all five of its operations, ending the period with a total of 28.2 million subscribers in South Africa; 6.26 million in Tanzania; 4.4 million in the Democratic Republic of Congo; 2.1 million in Mozambique; and 586,000 in Lesotho, up year-on-year by 11.7%, 27%, 16.6%, 65.8% and 30.2% respectively.