Egypt's Mobinil says Q1 net income up 14%

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By  Will Rasmussen Published  May 8, 2008

Egyptian mobile operator Mobinil posted a 14% rise in first-quarter net income on Wednesday to 451 million Egyptian pounds ($84 million) as the number of subscribers jumped by more than half.

Mobinil, Egypt's largest operator by number of customers, said it had 16.161 million subscribers by the end of the quarter, up 52% from a year earlier. It added 1.044 million subscribers during the quarter.

Net revenues rose 27% to 2.25 billion pounds.

"The first-quarter results are in line with our expectations, continuing our solid growth and delivering healthy operational indicators for all our business drivers," chief executive Alex Shalaby said in a statement.

Shalaby said in April he expected the number of subscribers to jump 33% to nearly 20 million this year as it signs up people on lower incomes.

Mobinil's annual net profit will slow from the 20% growth in 2007 but will be "in the teens" as competition increases, Shalaby had said.

Mobinil, whose shareholders include France Telecom and Orascom Telecom, competes with Etisalat Egypt, a unit of UAE-based Emirates Telecommunications Corp. and Vodafone Egypt.

Shares in Mobinil, down about 3% this year, last traded 1.7% lower at 198 pounds. (Reuters)

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