Ooredoo Group reported a QR22.1bn revenue in the first nine months of 2021, a 3% jump over the same period last year, mainly driven by growth in Qatar, Indonesia, and Tunisia. Excluding foreign exchange (FX) impact, revenue increased by 6%.
Group EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation) for the nine-month period stood at QR9.9bn with a corresponding EBITDA margin of 45%, driven by growth in Indonesia, Kuwait, and Algeria. The EBITDA growth rate stood at 7% and at 10%, excluding FX impact.
Consolidated customer base increased by 2% to exceed 120mn due to strong performances in Indonesia, Oman, Algeria, and Iraq.
Group net profit was negative mainly due to FX losses and the impairments in Myanmar. The negative impact was partly offset by profit from the sale and leaseback of Indosat Ooredoo’s tower assets (QR1bn) and reversals of Covid-19 FX provision. Excluding these one-offs and FX impact, net profit increased by 41%.
Commenting on the results, Ooredoo chairman Sheikh Faisal bin Thani al-Thani said: “We reported solid results for the nine months ended September 30, 2021, driven by the ongoing implementation of our digital strategy and cost optimisation programme. Revenues increased by 3%, and our EBITDA margin improved to 45%, up from 43% from 9M 2020, despite the challenges presented to us due to Covid-19.
“As a leader in the industry, we strive to provide reliable connectivity and innovative products to our customers, which has, in turn, resulted in increased customer confidence in the business and an increase in our customer base by an additional two percent.”
Ooredoo managing director Aziz Aluthman Fakhroo said, “We are pleased to report the ongoing positive trend in the business as market activity improves in some of our core markets. This trend is even stronger excluding the FX impact with revenue growth of 6% and EBITDA growth of 10%.
“Our net profit was impacted mainly due to FX losses and the impairment of our operations in Myanmar, due to the continued political unrest. The negative impact was partially offset by the gain realised on Indonesian tower sale and leaseback transaction. Excluding these one-offs and the FX impact, the net profit increased by 41%.
Ooredoo Qatar continues to deliver strong results with growth in revenue of 3% and a strong EBITDA margin of 54%. Cost control measures resulted in an improved EBITDA for Ooredoo Kuwait and Ooredoo Algeria. Ooredoo Tunisia recorded an 8% increase in revenue for the nine-month period. Ooredoo Oman’s customer base increased by 6% and Asiacell recorded 7% more customers, he said.
Fakhroo said Indosat Ooredoo continues to deliver a strong set of results across the board, contributing significantly towards group growth, with a 14% increase in revenue and an improved EBITDA margin of 50%.
“We expect to see significant growth following the proposed merger of Indosat Ooredoo and CK Hutchison, which was announced in September. The merger will lead to the creation of a stronger number two telco operator in the Indonesian market and a new world-class digital telecoms and internet company for Indonesia.
“As a digital powerhouse, Indosat Ooredoo Hutchison will generate greater value for customers, shareholders, as well as the country, backed by its two strong and experienced holding companies, who will retain joint control of the merged entity and support its future growth. We remain optimistic about the growth of the business and look forward to continuing to deliver long-term value to all our key stakeholders,” Fakhroo added.
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