Mobistar cites impact of MTR, roaming rate cuts as revenues fall

23 Jul 2013

Having claimed that regulations on mobile termination rates (MTRs) and roaming charges had had a negative impact of EUR31.1 million on its total consolidated turnover in the first half of 2013, Belgian multi-service operator Mobistar has posted a 5.7% year-on-year decline in revenue for that period. In publishing its financial results for the first six months of 2013 Mobistar reported total consolidated turnover amounting to EUR757.0 million (USD988 million), down from EUR802.5 million in the corresponding period of 2012. Such a decline, the company said, was linked to ‘the reduction in out-of-bundle revenue triggered by the integrated Animal bundles’. Specifically, Mobistar claimed that the impact of the reduction in MTRs totalled EUR17 million in H1 2013, while for roaming tariffs the impact was EUR14.1 million. Excluding regulatory impact, the operator noted that total consolidated turnover for the first half of 2013 would have been 1.8% lower than in the same period of 2012.

Meanwhile, in the first half of 2013 Mobistar reported EBITDA of EUR180.9 million, down more than 27% against the EUR249.7 million recorded in H1 2012. This decline, it said, was in particular the result of the lower service revenues generated in the second quarter of the year, while it also highlighted the fact that EBITDA in H1 2012 benefited from the reversal of a EUR17.5 million provision for compensation relating to universal service. Consolidated net profit in the first half of 2013 tumbled by 38.3% to EUR57.3 million.

Despite revenue declines, Mobistar registered an increase in the number of mobile customers on its books, reporting a total subscriber base of 4.404 million, up 6.3% year-on-year. Of note, however, was the fact that the customer signing up directly to Mobistar’s services actually fell by 5.5% y-o-y to 3.330 million, while the number of customers using the cellco’s network via a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) surged to 1.073 million, representing a more than 73% increase against the number recorded at end-June 2012. Fixed line broadband accesses, meanwhile, stood at 67,412 at the end of June 2012, down from 77,496 a year earlier, while active fixed telephone lines fell from 231,761 to 219,838.

Belgium, Orange Belgium