Indonesia’s second largest telecoms operator by subscribers and revenues, PT Indosat, has reported a sharp 131.6% rise in net income for the first six months of this year, driven by climbing revenues, lower costs and the impact of currency gains. The telco booked H1 profit of IDR681.9 billion (USD80.1 million) on revenue of IDR10.05 trillion, which was up 4% from IDR9.66 trillion in the first half of 2010. Indosat said costs fell 70% year-on-year from IDR1.1 trillion to IDR330.6 billion, and currency gains rose 25.1% y-o-y to IDR47.3 billion. The telco closed out June 2011 with 47.3 million mobile subscribers, up 25.1% from 37.8 million a year earlier. It also reported 506,800 wireless broadband customers, down from 751,900 in 1H10, and 350,500 fixed wireless access (FWA) subscribers (697,400). Commenting on the results, the operator’s chief executive Harry Sasongko said his company will most likely maintain strong profit growth in the second half of this year due to the Ramadan and Eid Al-Fitr festivities and year-end holiday period.
In a separate story, Dow Jones Newswires writes that Indonesia’s State-Enterprise Minister Mustafa Abubakar has asked the management of Indosat’s main rival PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia (Telkom) to conduct a feasibility exercise concerning a possible partnership between Telkom and Indosat, to improve the competitiveness and performance of both companies. The government holds a 51.19% stake in Telkom and a 14.29% interest in Indosat.