TPG Telecom reports first-half financials, signs wholesale FTTB deal with Uniti Group

20 Aug 2021

Australia’s TPG Telecom claims to have delivered ‘solid’ results for the first half of 2021, with its performance said to have been ‘driven by merger synergy realisation and integration benefits’.

TPG Telecom’s reported revenue for the six months ended 30 June 2021 totalled AUD2.63 billion (USD1.89 billion), representing year-on-year growth of 71%, while EBITDA rose by 67%, to AUD886 million. However, it was noted that growth in both of those financial metrics reflected the fact that H1 2020 included only four days contribution from TPG Corporation, compared to a full six-month contribution in 1H21. As such, the operator noted that pro forma it recorded a 3% y-o-y drop in underlying EBITDA, primarily driven by adverse impacts of mobile subscriber decline, other COVID-19 related impacts and NBN margin headwinds, partially offset by a strong OPEX performance. Meanwhile, TPG Telecom reported a net profit of AUD4.1 million for 1H21, compared to AUD19.0 million in the first half of 2020.

In terms of operational performance, TPG Telecom reported a mobile subscriber base totalling 5.113 million as of 30 June 2021, down from 5.642 million a year earlier, with the bulk of accesses being post-paid (3.193 million, down from 3.354 million). An update on the company’s 5G rollout was also provided, with it confirming that it is now offering the next generation of mobile broadband connectivity in ‘700+ suburbs’, while it claimed to have more than 750,000 5G-enabled devices on its network. Looking ahead, the operator said it expects coverage ‘to triple when 5G standalone core [is] deployed in late 2021’, and it expects to have 1,000 5G sites in operation by the end of this year. In the fixed broadband sector, meanwhile, TPG Telecom reported 2.195 million accesses, representing a marginal increase from the 2.121 million reported at mid-2020, with 1.950 million of those connecting via the National Broadband Network (NBN).

In separate but related news, TPG Telecom announced that Uniti Group has signed up as a wholesale customer on TPG’s ‘fibre-to-the-basement’ (‘FTTB’) network, which connects more than 240,000 premises in high-density apartment buildings in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and other metro areas. According to Dan Lloyd, Group Executive Wholesale at TPG Telecom, this agreement will make the FTTB footprint available to Uniti’s 40 retail service providers (RSPs), and the executive noted: ‘This agreement presents significant potential for customer growth on our FTTB network by tapping into Uniti’s wholesale network.’