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LG Uplus returns to profit in 1Q13 as revenues rise

1 May 2013

South Korea’s smallest cellco by subscribers, LG Uplus, has reported a return to profit in the first three months of 2013, after it registered a net loss in the last quarter of 2013. In the three months ended 31 March 2013 LG Uplus posted a net income of KRW74.3 billion (USD66.8 million), more than triple the KRW23.1 billion it recorded in 1Q12, and reversing the KRW11.2 billion loss it reported in 4Q12. Total revenues in the period under review stood at KRW2.86 trillion, up from KRW2.51 trillion y-o-y, with service revenues and turnover from handset climbing by 12.1% and 13.2% to KRW1.85 trillion and KRW1.01 trillion, respectively. EBITDA in 1Q13 was KRW443.1 billion, representing a 13.2% increase against the year-ago period, while operating income rose by more than 85% to KRW123.2 billion. CAPEX for the quarter, meanwhile, was KRW361.6 billion, down from the KRW392.0 billion in 1Q12.

In operational terms, at the end of March 2013 LG Uplus reported a total wireless subscriber base of 10.363 million, up 8.5% compared to the 9.554 million accesses it had a year earlier. Of that total, LG Uplus revealed that more than half were now signed up to Long Term Evolution (LTE) tariffs, with its 4G subscriber numbers having risen to 5.202 million, up more than four-fold from 1.484 million at end-March 2012. The operator’s broadband accesses rose 1.3% y-o-y to reach 2.802 million, while IPTV subscribers numbered 1.179 million at the end of the quarter, up from 893,000 a year earlier. PSTN subscribers, meanwhile, were up 11.2% against 1Q12 at 502,000, while VoIP connections rose by 15.4% to 3.808 million.

South Korea, LG Uplus

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