Singapore’s second largest telecoms operator by subscribers StarHub has reported an 11% year-on-year rise in net profits to SGD87 million (USD69.9 million) for the three months ending 30 June 2012, fuelled by increased revenue returns across all of its business divisions. The telco booked quarterly revenue of SGD591 million in the period under review, up 4% year-on-year, with sales derived from mobile services – the group’s single largest contributor – up 1% y-o-y at SGD306.2 million. StarHub added a net 1,100 customers to its post-paid user base in the second quarter, and also noted that sales of Android-based smartphones continues to improve. ‘About 60% of the phones we sell are Android phones,’ said StarHub CEO Neil Montefiore, during a call with reporters. Montefiore’s firm also reaffirmed its intentions to introduce tiered data bundles to further monetise data growth in 2012 and beyond.
On a less positive note, StarHub said that whilst it anticipated demand of residential fibre-optic next generation nationwide broadband network (NBN) services to continue, unresolved operational issues were hampering uptake on the corporate front. ‘The take-up by commercial customers may continue to be slow as certain operational issues have yet to be satisfactorily resolved by the various parties involved in the NBN rollout,’ the telco said. StarHub COO has called for tighter minimum standards to be set for the network company (OpenNet) rolling out the NBN in order to meet demand for business user installations, adding that the telco had ‘put forward its request’ to the regulator, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA), to do so. In May this year, StarHub complained that delays in fibre-optic installation were affecting its ability to provide access and services corporate customers in as many as 20,000 buildings. The IDA revised the contract in July this year, requiring a higher set of standards for OpenNet to build out the nation’s fibre infrastructure, including raising the number of installation slots from 2,400 to 3,100 per week.