Friday 1 July 2022

Shaikh Mohamed and Hinnawi.

Batelco posts solid growth in Q1, net profit up 60pc

MANAMA, May 3, 2018

Batelco, the regional telecommunications group with operations across 14 countries, today announced a promising start to the year with strong improvement in its overall performance compared to the first quarter of 2017.

Announcing the first quarter financial results for 2018, Batelco said its net profit surged 60 per cent to hit BD13.1 million ($34.5 million). compared to BD8.2 million the year before.

The kingdom's top telecom services operator also witnessed a 43 per cent jump in its operating profit which rose to BD20.3 million from BD14.2 million last year. The revenues too increased for the three-month period hitting BD99.5 million ($262.1 million), up 11 per cent over last year's BD89.7 million.

Ebitda for the first three months was put at BD36.6 million, up 13 per cent from BD32.3 million in 2017, while the EPS hit 7.9 fils from 4.9 fils last year.

Announcing the results, Batelco Chairman Shaikh Mohamed bin Khalifa Al Khalifa said: "It is an excellent start for 2018 with double digit improvements in the financial results over the first quarter of 2017.  Across our group of operations, we are working diligently on our strategic plans to provide reliable and future proof networks that meet the needs of each location, with their specific requirements."

"At home, we remain focussed on ensuring that Bahrain is among the best-connected countries in the region, in support of the Bahrain government’s initiatives for the communications sector," stated Shaikh Mohamed.

"Digitisation across all sectors of the community remains high on our agenda, with ongoing investment in fibre networks, Tier III Data Centres and the development of our digital solutions portfolio," he added.

Batelco said the gross revenues were up 11 per cent from BD89.7 million reported last year to BD99.5 million supported by strong performance at Batelco Bahrain and Umniah Jordan.

Umniah still tops Batelco’s revenue from its overseas operations and this quarter it reported a 24 per cent growth in comparison to the same period last year. 

In Bahrain, revenues were boosted by improvements in mobile and broadband services and in Umniah revenues were up in all revenue streams with notable growth in adjacent services and fixed broadband.

Ebitda for the first quarter of 2018 stood at BD36.6 million up 13 per cent over BD32.3 million in Q1 2017, representing revenue gains and the group’s cost containment programmes.  

Operating profit also improved by 43 per cent from BD14.2 million this quarter to BD20.3 million, it added.  

Batelco Group CEO Ihab Hinnawi said that positive performances at home in Bahrain and at a number of the group’s international operations led to the very promising start to the year reflected in gross revenues and net profits.

"The solid execution of our strategic plans across all our OPCOS is starting to be reflected in the bottom line, and we are naturally delighted to get off to such a good start to 2018," noted Hinnawi.

"Our plans, which include strengthening our digital capabilities, are having the positive impact that we hoped for. Our transformation agenda, to create a leaner and more agile organisation, continues to be rolled out across all operations and we are very optimistic for the future," he added.

Hinnawi pointed out that on the mergers and acquisitions front, Batelco was still in the market of assessing new opportunities within the communications field and across adjacent industries to increase the Group’s value.

"Throughout the group, we are pleased to note that broadband subscriber numbers have increased.  Notable increases include growing customer numbers for Broadband products in Bahrain with numbers up by 4 per cent over Q4, 2017 and 27 per cent year-on-year," he noted.

"Umniah and Dhiraagu (Maldives) have also posted improved broadband numbers with both companies showing an increase of 13 per cent over Q4, 2017 and year-on-year increases of 84 and 65 per cent respectively," he added.

Dhiraagu started the first quarter with a 9 per cent revenue growth in comparison to last year due to growing mobile data and FTTH revenue in Maldives.

For the period, 61 per cent of revenues and 52 per cent of Ebitda was mainly due to operations outside of Bahrain.

Besides Umniah and Dhiraagu, the Bahrain telco giant has its services in Kuwait under the brand name Quality Net and in Channel Islands, Isle of Man, South Atlantic & Diego Garcia under Sure Group.

Qualitynet remains market leader in the Fixed Data Communication and Internet Services and ICT industry in Kuwait. During the quarter, the company established a local branch in Iraq to support its existing business and new opportunities in the country.

Batelco Bahrain CEO Mohamed Bubashait said that the telco giant's successful fibre delivery and comprehensive portfolio of digital products and services has resulted in a growth in customer numbers in the kingdom. The number of fixed line customers grew 7 per cent, while the Broadband numbers were up 27 per cent year over year.

“Batelco continues to support directives that aim to strengthen the kingdom’s position as a leading regional communications hub, attracting further commercial investments and tourists to Bahrain. In line with such commitments we continue to expand the scope of the Bahrain WiFi project to enable free WiFi at more public locations throughout the Kingdom,” stated Bubashait.

“Additionally, in support of our strategic plans to develop a world class advanced infrastructure, in line with the Kingdom’s vision and aspirations to maintain Bahrain’s position as a leader in the region’s ICT industry we recently announced the launch of Batelco Gulf Network (BGN),” said the top official.

“Furthermore, in line with our commitment to foster the development of Bahrain’s FinTech industry and drive the acceleration of the financial technology ecosystem, we were proud to announce our role as one of the founding partners of Bahrain FinTech Bay," remarked Bubashait.

"Technology is already playing a major role in shaping the financial industry and Batelco as a leader in delivering digital solutions for Bahrain is well placed to support the initiatives of the new operation,” he added.

On the 2018 outlook, Shaikh Mohamed said: “We are looking forward with enthusiasm as we enter the second quarter of the year. We believe that our strategic plans for all operations will continue to deliver the desired results."

"Our teams throughout our organisation are committed to the implementation of our strategic plans which include continuing to invest in digital technology, improving the quality and speed of LTE networks and continuing with transformational exercises aimed at increasing profitability going forward,” he added.-TradeArabia News Service

Tags: Bahrain | Telecom | Batelco | Revenue | Net Profit |

More IT & Telecommunications Stories

calendarCalendar of Events