China Unicom has reported a 20% year-on-year rise in net profit for the year ended 31 December 2011 to CNY4.212 billion (USD665.3 million). Revenues for the year increased by 22.2% to CNY209.152 billion, of which CNY126.526 billion (up 41.2%) came from the wireless sector, whilst CNY81.690 billion (up 2.3%) was from the telco’s fixed line operations. EBITDA for the year was CNY63.397 billion, up from CNY59.431 billion a year earlier.
Unicom reported a 17.8% increase in its broadband customer base, with 55.651 million users signed up at the end of 2011. Greater income from broadband services has offset the decline in fixed voice services: fixed voice services made up 36.1% of income from fixed services in 2011, compared to 44.2% the previous year whilst broadband contributed 43.2% of fixed revenues, up from 37.4%. In the wireless sector, Unicom noted a 182.3% jump in 3G revenues, with income from mobile data services having steadily increased by approximately 22.2% per quarter in 2011. Non-voice services made up 37.2% of Unicom’s wireless revenues in 2011, up by 5.2 percentage points from 2010.
Going forward, Unicom is looking to ramp-up 3G development and increase the proportion of higher ARPU contract customers to pre-paid users in 2012. The telco is also planning to accelerate broadband speed upgrades, and leverage speed advantages to drive subscriber growth.