Macedonian mobile operator VIP Mobile, part of the Telekom Austria Group, has reported earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of EUR2.5 million (USD3.1 million) for the three months to 30 June 2012, up from EUR500,000 in the corresponding period of 2011, on revenue that rose 10.4% year-on-year to EUR14.6 million. Operating expenses decreased by 4.9% y-o-y, primarily driven by lower interconnection expenses, lower marketing costs and other cost savings. Operating income amounted to EUR300,000, an improvement from a loss of EUR2.1 million in the previous financial period. The cellco’s strong performance was driven by strong subscriber growth, with customer numbers up to 600,800 at end-June, compared to 504,900 at 2Q11, a market share of 26.0%.
VIP also reported an increase in volumes which translated into higher monthly fees and traffic, as well as higher interconnection revenues. Average revenue per user (ARPU) remained almost stable at EUR7.5 per month, it said.
Earlier this month, TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate reported that VIP has been awarded radio spectrum for GSM-1800 and IMT-2000 (UMTS) services covering the territory of Macedonia. National regulator the Agency for Electronic Communications (AEC) issued VIP with licence authorisations in the 1720MHz-1730MHz (uplink) and 1815MHz-1825MHz (downlink) band, valid for ten years with the option to extend for a further ten. Concurrently, VIP has been awarded rights to spectrum in the 880MHz-890MHz and 1710MHz-1720MHz (uplink) and 925MHz-935MHz and 1805MHz-1815MHz (downlink) bands for GSM and UMTS services. The cellco intends to launch its 3G network next month and plans to cover all regions of the country with its UMTS signal by end-September.