Etihad Etisalat (Mobily), Saudi Arabia’s second largest mobile operator by subscribers, has announced its financial results for the three months ended 31 March 2015, reporting a 87.7% slump in net profit to SAR199 million (USD53.1 million), down from SAR1.612 billion in Q1 2014. According to a press release on the Saudi Stock Exchange’s (Tadawul’s) website, the negative development was mainly attributed to a decrease in revenues attributed to non-recurring data revenue, chiefly fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) capital lease amounting to SAR1.265 billion in 1Q14, in addition to an increase in depreciation expenses by SAR250 million and ‘additional doubtful debt provisions amounting to SAR133 million, mainly relating to non-performing receivables from customers’. In the three months to end-March 2015 revenues decreased to SAR3.613 billion, down by 29% year-on-year, while gross profit was down by 44.0% to SAR1.870 billion from SAR3.345 billion in 1Q14. The operator, however, pointed out that revenues for the three months to end-March 2015 were down by 3% y-o-y, when excluding equipment sales from the two comparable quarters and non-recurring FTTH capital lease revenues in Q1 2014. EBITDA for Q1 2015 amounted to SAR908 million, a 63.5% slump on an annualised basis, when compared to the SAR2.485 billion reported in March 2014.
CEO Serkan Okandan commented: ‘Mobily is committed to two main priorities: firstly we are working to secure and strengthen our customer base, both with consumers and our fast-growing business segment. Secondly we aim to implement operational efficiencies to generate savings across the business. By focusing on these two important areas, we are confident that we can maintain and build on our position as the region’s most innovative provider of communications services.’