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Mobinil sees 28m subscribers by 2010-end

Cairo, February 12, 2010

Egyptian mobile operator Mobinil expects revenue growth to slow to 5 per cent in 2010 and to boost its subscribers to 28 million by the end of the year, its chief financial officer said.

Mobinil, which leads Egypt's competitive mobile market by number of subscribers, said it had 25.35 million customers at the end of December.

By comparison, Vodafone's Egyptian unit added 1.26 million subscribers in the same period to reach 23.33 million, the London-based company said earlier this month.

The likely drop in revenue growth, a result of aggressive pricing promotions, will push Mobinil's Ebitda margin percentage down to a range in 'the low to mid-40s,' Khalid Ellaicy told a conference call with analysts and journalists on Thursday.

He also said the firm's tangible capital expenditure for the year was expected to be between 2.5 billion and 3 billion Egyptian pounds.

The full-year Ebitda margin in 2009 was 47.4 percent and capex was 2.6 billion pounds.

Ellaicy saw no end to the price war with Vodafone Egypt and Etisalat Egypt that peaked in the third quarter with offers to coincide with Ramadan.

'I do believe there will be more competitiveness, more aggressiveness (in) post-paid and pre-paid,' he said.

'What we hope is that the other players will have common sense to see that severe price reductions will only hurt the business long-term,' he said.-Reuters




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