Qatar-based Ooredoo Group has reported its results for the year ended 31 December 2018, in which consolidated revenue fell 8% to QAR29.927 billion (USD8.177 billion) and EBITDA dropped 11% to QAR12.202 billion. The consolidated customer base was reduced by 30% year-on-year to 115 million at end-2018 (down from 164 million at end-2017) as group results were significantly impacted by the market situation in Indonesia following SIM card registration regulations, challenging market conditions in Algeria, and the overall foreign exchange weakness in emerging markets. Annual net profit attributable to Ooredoo shareholders fell 18% to QAR1.565 billion as positive performances in Iraq, Oman, Kuwait and Tunisia were offset by market challenges and lower revenues in Indonesia and Algeria.
In positive group highlights, Ooredoo Qatar increased its EBITDA by 2% ‘in spite of operating in a highly penetrated and mature market’ and Ooredoo Kuwait grew its revenues by 9%, driven by customer additions and an increase in handset sales. Ooredoo Myanmar’s EBITDA surged 29% and the Myanmar mobile customer base grew by 21% as the operator tailored its strategy to serve both urban and rural populations. Ooredoo Algeria reached all 48 wilayas (regions) of the country with its 4G LTE network – claiming an Algerian first – whilst Ooredoo’s Iraq subsidiary Asiacell benefitted from the stabilisation of market conditions and reported a 6% increase in EBITDA. Ooredoo Tunisia reported (in local currency) a 9% revenue increase and 7% EBITDA improvement.