Driven by a growth in revenues, increased monetisation of data business and improving customer base in multiple markets, Ooredoo Group posted revenue of QR33bn and a net profit of nearly QR2bn in 2017.
Group EBITDA increased 3% to QR13.8bn with a corresponding increase in EBITDA margin to 42%, indicating a further improvement in operational performance from fiscal year (FY) 2016 (41%). Excluding foreign exchange translation impact, group EBITDA increased by 4% year-on-year.
FY 2017 revenue increased to QR32.7bn, driven by strong contributions from Indonesia, Iraq, Kuwait, Maldives and Oman. Excluding foreign exchange translation impact, revenues increased by 2% compared to the reported 1% revenue increase.
New government levies in Oman and one-off provision reversals in 2016 led to a decrease in group net profit by 10% to QR2bn. Excluding these, the normalised net profit attributable to Ooredoo shareholders increased by 1%.
On the results, Ooredoo Group chairman HE Sheikh Abdulla bin Mohamed bin Saud al-Thani said, “2017 was another very good year for Ooredoo Group, with growth in revenues, EBITDA, EBITDA margin and customer numbers. Most importantly, during 2017 we focused on what we do best: enrich people’s digital and real-life journeys. We expanded access to 4G services in most of our operations and prepared our network for 4.5 and 5G.
“A significant moment for the year was the much awaited launch of operations in Gaza, Palestine, with the largest investment in telecommunications in Gaza in nearly two decades.
“We are proud to have received global recognition for enabling Qatar to have the fastest average broadband connection speeds in the Middle East and North Africa, and 7th-fastest in the world, and for leveraging the power of broadband for sustainable development.
“We maintain our leadership position and commitment to connecting and developing the citizens of emerging economies where we operate and are proud to now serve almost 164mn people.
For our shareholders, we continue to deliver long-term growth and value. The Board of Directors proposed a cash dividend of QR3.5 for 2017.”
Ooredoo Group chief executive officer Sheikh Saud bin Nasser al-Thani said, “I am pleased to report very solid results across the board. Group revenue increased 1% to QR 32.7bn, driven by growth in Indosat, Iraq, Oman, Maldives and Kuwait. During 2017, we continued to streamline our operations and achieved significant savings in 2017, particularly through our focus on centralised purchasing and infrastructure sharing. As a result, we increased our EBITDA by 3% to QR13.8bn and improved our EBITDA margin to 42%.
“We are a well monetised data business, with QR15.3bn in data revenue now accounting for 46% of our total revenues. In Qatar we became one of the world’s first companies to offer ‘5G Speed Experiences’.” Page 19
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