CWC publishes FY13 financials as it confirms plans to relocate headquarters

23 May 2013

Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC) has posted a 4% year-on-year decline in revenue from its continuing operations to USD1.942 billion in the twelve months to end-March 2013, while it revealed that mobile turnover remained flat as strong mobile data growth was offset by falling voice revenue. Group EBITDA was flat in FY 2013, standing at USD589 million compared to the USD590 million reported in the previous fiscal year; an improved performance in Monaco resulting from the disposal of Afinis, CWC noted, was offset by declines in Panama and in the Caribbean. Operating profit for the period under review, meanwhile, was USD328 million, unchanged from FY12, with the group highlighting the fact that it had taken an exceptional restructuring charge of USD50 million related to efficiency initiatives in FY13, in addition to an exceptional non-cash impairment charge of USD86 million in the Eastern Caribbean which it said reflected ‘the more difficult economic climate [it] face[s] in those markets’. Net profit in FY13 totalled USD178 million, significantly higher than the USD26 million reported in the previous year, following lower exceptional charges.

Looking ahead, CWC has said that in the coming fiscal year it expects group EBITDA to be similar to that recorded in FY13, while capital expenditure is forecast at approximately USD300 million for the year ending 31 March 2014.

Commenting on the results, CWC chief executive officer Tony Rice said: ‘2012/13 has been a milestone year for Cable & Wireless Communications. The agreements to sell our Monaco & Islands and Macau businesses have reshaped the Group and we have achieved the goal of structural coherence that we set ourselves at the demerger of Cable & Wireless in 2010. The Group is now focused on a single region with low penetration for data services and strong growth potential where we have scale and market leadership. This focus will create a more unified, effective and cost-efficient Group. It will enable us to transform how we operate our businesses as we create an organisation structure and operating model that addresses the demands of a data driven market and can be scaled for growth.’

Such a focus, meanwhile, is behind the company’s decision to relocate from London and establish ‘a new combined regional headquarters from which key operational and corporate functions will be based’. According to the Financial Times the company will move its operational headquarters to either Miami or Fort Lauderdale in Florida, although it is expected to retain its London listing and UK domicile. Speaking on the decision to move, Mr Rice was cited as saying: ‘I want us to stay a British company, but we need to move closer to our markets. We want to operate in a fundamentally different way.’

United Kingdom, Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC, incl. Columbus Int.)