Vimpelcom posts USD1bn Q3 net loss on charge for potential fines

6 Nov 2015

Amsterdam-headquartered, US-listed telecoms group Vimpelcom Ltd has posted a USD1.01 billion net loss for the third quarter ended 30 September 2015, largely because of a pre-announced USD900 provision set aside in anticipation of fines stemming from US and Dutch authorities investigating former business dealings in Uzbekistan, though falling revenues were also a contributing factor. Reuters reports that the Q3 net loss compares to a net profit of USD105 million a year earlier, whilst Vimpelcom’s revenues fell 31% year-on-year to USD2.44 billion in July-September 2015, and operating profit plunged 96% to USD58 million. Vimpelcom noted that stripping out the impact of the potential fines, it would have had a core quarterly EBITDA profit of USD1.02 billion, although down by 33% y-o-y. Meanwhile, international officials continue examining payments to officials allegedly made to obtain operating licences; former Vimpelcom CEO Jo Lunder was arrested in Oslo on Thursday in connection with the Dutch probe, although Lunders claims he is innocent of any wrongdoing. Current CEO Jean-Yves Charlier said in a statement that revenue and EBITDA ‘continue to be impacted by adverse currency movements’ but added the Russian-backed group is beginning to see ‘improving operating momentum’.

Russia, VEON