Moscow-based telecoms giant Mobile TeleSystems (MTS) has reported revenues of USD3.014 billion for the three months ended 31 March 2012, a rise of 2.7% year-on-year. OIBDA for Q1 increased 11.8% year-on-year to USD1.259 billion, while quarterly net income jumped 59.1% from USD321.6 million to USD511.7 million. The group’s domestic unit contributed the lion’s share of 1Q12 sales, reporting revenues of RUB78.679 billion (USD2.519 billion) for January-March 2012, an increase of 5.9% y-o-y. Meanwhile MTS Ukraine saw revenues rise 7.8% y-o-y to UAH2.218 billion (USD272 million) and MTS Uzbekistan recorded sales of USD115.7 million, up 10.5%. Elsewhere, the group’s Armenian unit VivaCell-MTS also reported a rise in quarterly revenues, to AMD16.682 billion (USD41.8 million), up 2.4% compared to the year-ago period.
Andrei Dubovskov, president and CEO of MTS, commented: ‘We saw sustained growth in usage of voice and data products, although the exchange rate volatility masked the underlying growth dynamics in markets such as Russia and Armenia. Key drivers included higher usage of mobile voice and data products, and growth and expansion in our fixed-line business unit … As has recently been announced, Roskomnadzor disclosed the conditions for the allocation of LTE licences in the Russian Federation. Obviously the clarity of the tender and framework for development are testament to the transparency of the Russian telecommunications market; we also share a commitment among both the regulator and operators to continue expanding access to telecommunications services and encourage further infrastructure development. Leveraging our current frequencies in the 2595MHz-2620MHz band, we recently launched a test zone for LTE-TDD services in Moscow and the Moscow region. While we are focused on an MTS-owned and operated LTE-FDD network as a standard for all of Russia, we are examining complementary ways to ensure that we are among the first to market for LTE products and have a network capable of handling future growth in data.’