State-owned full-service provider Swisscom has reported its annual results for the year to end-December 2020, booking a 3.1% decline in net revenue to CHF11.1 billion (USD12.3 billion). The telco attributed the dip primarily to continuing price pressure in its domestic market – with its Swiss operations recording a 3.5% year-on-year decrease in revenue to CHF8.3 billion – partially offset by positive developments at its Italian unit, Fastweb. Swisscom acknowledged that the COVID-19 pandemic had a negative impact on its business, particularly on roaming revenues, but added that the net impact on its operating income was low. EBITDA inched up by 0.6% year-on-year to CHF4.38 billion, whilst net profit for the year was CHF1.5 billion, down 8.4% from CHF1.7 billion in 2019. Swisscom notes that the swing was the result of the positive one-off effect of CHF269 million included in income tax expense in 2019, which saw income tax expenses for the year rise from CHF55 million in 2019 to CHF271 million in 2020.
Swisscom Switzerland counted a total of 6.224 million mobile subscribers at end-December 2020, down 1.7% y-o-y, but recognised a net increase in post-paid connections of 81,000. Of that total, 62,000 were attributed to its sub-brands such as Wingo and M-Budget Mobile. In the fixed segment, Swisscom reported slight declines in its Swiss broadband and TV subscriber bases, to 2.043 million (-0.7%) and 1.554 million (-0.1%) respectively, noting that the markets are ‘saturated and heavily driven by promotional offerings.’ Swisscom added that demand for its multi-service ‘inOne’ bundles remained high, however, with 2.45 million subscribers signed up to the plans, accounting for 68% of all mobile subscriptions and 76% of broadband connections.
Regarding its infrastructure development programmes, meanwhile, Swisscom claimed that 4.4 million or 82% of homes and businesses in Switzerland to its ‘ultra-fast broadband (UBB)’ service (speeds in excess of 80Mbps), whilst 3.1 million or 59% of homes and businesses had access to speeds of more than 200Mbps, and the coverage for speeds of 10Gbps is around 32%. Swisscom is aiming to extend its ‘UBB’ footprint to all municipalities by the end of 2021, and is targeting 60% coverage via its fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network by 2025. Swisscom went on to note that a ‘basic’ version of 5G technology currently covers 96% of the Swiss population, whilst ‘full 5G’ – also referred to by the company as ‘5G+’ – was available in 522 locations via 1,239 antennas.