Strong home market drives Batelco growth
Strong performance in the Bahraini market has helped Batelco boost its revenues from fixed broadband, data communications and mobile services here as the company set out on a “new journey” backed by “restructuring and reorganising” efforts. Batelco’s revenues in the home market of Bahrain have increased by 6 per cent yearover-year helped by revenues from fixed broadband, data communications and mobile, which are up year-onyear by 12pc, 13pc and 5pc respectively.
Batelco Chairman, Shaikh Abdulla bin Khalifa Al Khalifa said the company is ‘pleased’ with the performance as the revenues reflects “increased revenues specifically in the areas of fixed broadband, data communications and mobile.” Revenues, however, was marginally impacted by the sale of Kuwait’s Quality Net “carried out based on the changing telecommunications landscape in Kuwait.”
Batelco CEO Mikkel Vinter said its separation into two independent entities have provided the company with an “opportunity to refocus on redesigning the Company’s strategy and business model to create new revenue streams such as delivering leading-edge digital solutions for the business, government and consumer sectors, supported by an exceptional customer experience, while optimising cost efficiency.”
Net profit attributable to equity holders of the company was BD10.2 million (US$27.1m), a 41 per cent decrease from BD17.3m (US$45.9m) in the year-ago quarter. Earnings per share (EPS) was 6.2 fils for the third quarter of 2019 compared to 10.4 fils in Q3 2018. Total comprehensive income attributable to equity holders was BD8.1m (US$21.5m) a decrease of 51pc from BD16.4m (US$43.5m) in the prior-year quarter.
Operating profit was down by 28pc to BD14.6m (US$38.7m) from BD20.0m (US$53.1m) in Q3 2018. EBITDA stood at BD31.6m (U S$ 8 3. 8 m ) c o m p a r e d t o BD36.3m (US$96.3m) in Q3 2018, representing a decline of 13pc. Batelco attributed the decline to a BD8.1m (US$21.5m) Life Beyond Employment (LBE) cost, which is a voluntary employee retirement programme.
The programme will reduce future staff costs whilst simultaneously rewarding employees that wish to retire early. Adjusted EBITDA for the period without the LBE cost is 6pc higher year-on-year. Revenues for the quarter decreased by 5pc to BD96.9m (US$257.0m) from BD101.5m (US$ 269.2m) in the same quarter a year ago.
Net profits attributable to equity holders of the company was BD44.2m (US$117.2m) were down 4pc from BD46.0m (US$122.0m) for the corresponding period in 2018. EPS was 26.7 fils compared to an EPS of 27.8 for the same period in 2018. Total comprehensive income attributable to equity holders of the company was up by 10pc from BD38.8m (US$102.9m) to BD42.5m (US$112.7m). Year-on-year operating profits decreased by 8pc from BD60.5m (US$160.5m) in 2018 to BD55.6m (US$147.5m).
Total Equity attributable to equity holders of the company was BD459.2m (US$1,218.0m) compared to BD 465.2m (US$1,234.0m) as of 31 December 2018, a decrease of 1pc. Revenues were BD298.5m (US$791.8m), a decrease of 1pc when compared to BD301.5m (US$799.7m) of revenues for the same period in 2018.
Consolidated revenues have been impacted by the sale of Qualitynet in May 2019, whereby the company contributed an additional BD11.0m (US$29.2m) in revenues during the same period last year. Looking forward, Batelco Chairman Shaikh Abdulla said the launch of BNET will allow both new entities to now forge ahead with establishing their individual footprints on the local and regional markets.”