Belgium's Proximus sees 1% drop in sales in third quarter

27 Oct 2014

Belgian telecoms group Belgacom, which now trades under the Proximus brand, has reported revenues of EUR1.486 billion (USD1.883 billion) for the three months to 30 September 2014, down 1.0% on the year-ago figure due in part to a 6.1% year-on-year decline in sales at its Belgacom International Carrier Services (BICS) unit. EBITDA showed a slight increase, however, from EUR430 million to EUR433 million, thanks to lower personnel costs and other expenses, while net profit was stable at EUR156 million.

In operational terms, Proximus said its Consumer business unit had 3.56 million mobile customers at the end of September, down marginally from 3.57 million a year before, but the share of more lucrative post-paid subscriptions increased from 54% to 58%. The Enterprise unit recorded 1.76 million active customers, up from 1.62 million in 3Q13, including 260,000 machine-to-machine (M2M) connections and 93,000 ‘Internet Everywhere’ wireless broadband users. The number of consumer broadband internet connections, meanwhile, rose by 300,000 to 1.27 million, while the group also added 2,000 business broadband users to take the total to 443,000.

Dominique Leroy, Proximus CEO, commented: ‘Supported by our convergence strategy, the operational results remained good in spite of intensified competitive pressure over the quarter. With all our products now grouped under the Proximus brand since end-September, and our focus on improving the customer experience, we will push convergence even further, and drive customer upselling.’ The group is now expecting a slight increase in EBITDA for the full year, after previously forecasting a small decline, while it says sales for the year are expected to be down by around 1%-2%.