MTS’ 1Q13 revenues increase 1.9% to RUB92.9bn; CEO confirms AKADO speculation

10 Jun 2013

Moscow-based telecoms giant Mobile TeleSystems (MTS) has reported revenues of RUB92.86 million (USD2.88 billion) for the three months ended 31 March 2013, a rise of 1.9% year-on-year. OIBDA for Q1 increased 2.6% y-o-y to RUB39.08 billion, while quarterly net income dropped 16.9% to RUB12.96 million. The group’s domestic unit contributed the lion’s share of 1Q13 sales, reporting revenues of RUB82.75 billion for January-March 2013, an increase of 5.2% y-o-y. Meanwhile MTS Ukraine saw revenues rise 7.5% y-o-y to UAH2.38 billion (USD288 million), while the group’s Armenian unit VivaCell-MTS reported a 6.7% rise in quarterly revenues, to AMD17.80 billion (USD42.6 million).

Andrei Dubovskov, president and CEO of MTS, commented: ‘Overall growth compared to Q1 2012 was limited by the suspension of our operations in Uzbekistan. Excluding Uzbekistan, our topline grew by 6% year-over-year due to sustained growth in consumption of voice and data services in our markets … In Q1 2013, we delivered a 37% increase in data traffic revenue compared to Q1 2012. This growth outpaces average growth rates in the market … Overall we see continued stability and consistency in our markets of operation’.

In other news, business news agency Prime reports Dubovskov as confirming speculation that MTS is looking to seal the takeover of Moscow-based fixed operator AKADO Telecom, noting that the company has already applied to AKADO’s shareholders asking to carry out due diligence. Although no value has been suggested, TeleGeography notes that MegaFon participated in negotiations with AKADO in June 2011, with the asking price set at USD1.2 billion at that time. That projected deal fell apart due to shareholder wrangling.

Russia, AKADO Telecom, Mobile TeleSystems (MTS)