Etisalat revenues top US$1bn in Q1

UAE operator Etisalat has beaten analysts' expectations with the release of higher than anticipated results for its 2007 fiscal first quarter.

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By  Administrator Published  April 19, 2007

UAE operator Etisalat has beaten analysts' expectations with the release of higher than anticipated results for its 2007 fiscal first quarter.

The telco recorded a 37.3% increase in net profit to US$500.2million for Q1 compared to the same period a year ago.

The earnings growth is above the average 21.7% increase analysts forecast in a Reuters survey last month.

Etisalat also said it gained a record number of mobile subscribers during the quarter, despite losing its monopoly in the UAE in February with the launch of the country's second operator du.

Etisalat gained 280,000 mobile subscribers in the first quarter, bringing its total number of mobile users in the UAE to 5.78 million.

This was the operator's highest ever increase in mobile subscribers, according to Marc Hammoud, senior telecoms analyst at Dubai-based investment bank Shuaa Capital. He said the operator gained on average 230,000 users per quarter.

Mobile revenues accounted for more than 60% of Etisalat's total revenue, which jumped 31% to US$1.31 billion in Q1.

"The financial results for the first quarter of this year demonstrate the company's abilities and competitive strengths," said Mohamed Hassan Omran, chairman of Etisalat.

"We achieved financial results exceeding the analyst's expectations and continue to achieve high figures to coincide with our leading position offering telecommunication services in the region."

Etisalat operates telecoms services in 14 markets across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, and has over 32 million customers in total.

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