Oman Telecommunications Company (Omantel), the Sultanate’s incumbent telecoms operator, has reported a 2.5% increase in revenues to OMR351.5 million (USD909 million) for the first nine months of 2013, compared to OMR342.9 million in the year-ago period. Growth was mainly driven by strong domestic retail and wholesale businesses revenues, with total turnover from Oman up 6.5%. Net profit was OMR89.6 million for the nine months ended 30 September 2013, down slightly from OMR90.0 million in 9M 2012. Operating expenses increased 4.0% year-on-year to OMR257.1 million in the first nine months of 2013, mainly due to an increase in external administration expenses to OMR12.97 million, on account of increased international retail minutes to Pakistan, while employee-related costs also rose. Furthermore, the expansion of Omantel’s 3.5G, 4G LTE and fixed next generation networks also put pressure on operation and maintenance, and depreciation expenses.
Total Omantel subscribers (including Pakistani subsidiary Worldcall Telecommunications) reached 4.002 million at the end of September 2013, an increase of 6% from 3.774 million a year earlier. The firm’s domestic subscriber base increased 8.5% year-on-year to 3.075 million, with growth mainly driven by its mobile and broadband business. Commenting on the results, Omantel CEO Amer Awadh Al Rawas said: ‘Despite several challenging conditions in the local and Pakistani markets, Omantel has continued to see a steady growth. We are pleased with the positive results Omantel has made during this period and in particular the growth in our domestic subscriber base especially in mobile broadband and fixed broadband services, thanks to the network modernisation and customer experience enhancement initiatives.’