Singapore Telecommunications (Singtel) has published its financial results for its third quarter ended 31 December 2020, confirming that group operating revenue dropped 3.2% year-on-year to SGD4.239 billion (USD3.2 billion), as EBITDA fell 13.5% to SGD1.006 billion and EBIT plunged 38.3% to SGD328 million (excluding revenue from the national broadband network [NBN] migration). In its business update, the Group noted that its y-o-y performance had been ‘impacted by [the] ongoing pandemic and structural challenges in the [carrier] business’. Turnover from its Consumer business segment declined 10.8% on an annualised basis to SGD504 million, largely due to lower roaming, pre-paid mobile and voice revenues, noting that these had been impacted by a ‘plunge’ in tourist numbers and foreign workers.
In Australia, meanwhile, Singtel reported that operating revenue for its consumer business declined 8%, with EBITDA dropping 24.9%, as a result of the ‘steep’ fall in NBN migration revenue y-o-y, following the near-completion of the NBN rollout, from AUD233 million (USD180.9 million) to AUD72 million in the period under review.
Commenting on the third-quarter performance, Group CEO Yuen Kuan Moon said: ‘We are pleased to see a second straight quarter of revenue recovery as business activity resumes. While we continue to feel the effects of the pandemic with roaming and pre-paid revenues affected by travel restrictions, ICT continued to put in a strong showing led by NCS and Australia Enterprise, as businesses accelerated their digitalisation efforts … While the outlook is still uncertain, we are well positioned for the new normal, especially with the Group’s 5G rollout, the scaling of NCS and our digital bank joint venture in Singapore … In our regional associates’ markets, COVID-19 has compounded intense competition in both Indonesia and the Philippines. However, Airtel kept its steady growth momentum, delivering a strong performance in India for yet another quarter.’