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Ooredoo Group 2016 revenue inches up 1%; customers grow 19% to 138m

23 Feb 2017

Qatar-based Ooredoo Group’s consolidated annual revenue increased by 1% in 2016 to QAR32.503 billion (USD8.919 billion), driven by sales growth in local currency terms in Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, Algeria, Tunisia, Indonesia and Myanmar, whilst underlying group B2B revenue increased by 6% year-on-year to QAR5.5 billion. Consolidated EBITDA climbed 3% in full-year 2016 to QAR13.379 billion, boosting the EBITDA margin by one percentage point to 41%, whilst annual net profit attributable to Ooredoo shareholders improved by 4% to QAR2.193 billion.

Ooredoo reported that its customer base increased by 19% annually to reach 138 million at the end of December 2016, driven by strong mobile growth at Indosat Ooredoo (Indonesia), Ooredoo Myanmar, Ooredoo Oman, Asiacell (Iraq), Ooredoo Tunisia, Ooredoo Kuwait and Ooredoo Algeria, whilst noting that 4G LTE networks are now operated in eight of its markets. At its domestic division, revenue grew 1% to QAR8.0 billion and EBITDA increased by 1% to QAR4.0 billion in FY 2016, as Ooredoo Qatar clocked up achievements during the year including upgrading its peak 4G speed to 325Mbps and launching a 1Gbps fibre broadband service.

Indosat Ooredoo saw full-year revenues improve by 10% to QAR8.0 billion and total mobile customers rise by 23% to surpass 85 million, boosting EBITDA by 13% to QAR3.7 billion, as the division highlighted its expansion of mobile data connectivity across the country.

Ooredoo Myanmar boasted a 55% year-on-year rise in mobile customers to nine million at end-December 2016, helped by network expansion to ‘the vast majority of the population’, the launch of 4G services and additional 3G site rollouts. Myanmar revenues swelled by 38% to QAR1.5 billion, underpinned by data growth, and the annual EBITDA margin stood at negative 1%, an improvement on negative 7% the previous year.

Ooredoo Oman’s revenue increased by 7% to QAR2.6 billion in FY 2016, driven by both mobile and fixed data revenue, and EBITDA rose by 8% to QAR1.4 billion, with customer numbers climbing by 6% to almost three million.

Ooredoo Kuwait’s revenue was QAR2.4 billion in 2016, an increase of 5% compared to 2015, although EBITDA dropped slightly to QAR614 million versus QAR620 million due to ‘market competitiveness’. By the end of the year the unit claimed to have covered ‘the entire populated area of Kuwait’ with its 4G network, driving a 3% increase in total subscribers to 2.3 million.

Asiacell’s full-year 2016 revenue decreased 14% to QAR4.2 billion, impacted by economic and political challenges in Iraq, although it highlighted successes in reactivating services and rolling out its 3G network to stabilised regions of the country, with overall customer numbers increasing by 11% in the twelve-month period to twelve million. EBITDA fell 10% to QAR1.9 billion, a decline which Asiacell said was minimised by cost optimisation initiatives.

Ooredoo Algeria reported 13.8 million customers at end-2016, up 6% compared with 2015, with revenues increasing in local currency terms by 1%, although currency depreciation caused a 7% revenue drop in QAR terms; Algerian EBITDA stood at QAR1.3 billion with an EBITDA margin of 35%. The division’s 3G network reached all Algerian provinces in the year, whilst investing in 4G rollout in three provinces.

Ooredoo Tunisia also grew its subscriber base by 6% to report 8.0 million users at end-2016, although the Tunisian economy continued to suffer from slow tourism and the QAR results were impacted by the depreciation of the Tunisian Dinar. Consequently, 2016 revenues were QAR1.7 billion compared to QAR1.8 billion in 2015 (although increasing by 4% in local currency terms). Tunisian EBITDA stood at QAR686 million with a stable EBITDA margin in the 40% range.

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