Malaysia-based Axiata Group recorded a second straight quarter of stable revenue growth in Q3, but net profit dropped due to the loss of contributions from M1 in Singapore, which it sold earlier in the year.
Jamaludin Ibrahim, president and CEO, said the performance shows it successfully shifted gear in the opening nine months to take the lead among its peers. “I am particularly proud our operating companies emerged as top in their respective markets in meeting most of the metrics. Even as we aimed for profitability and cash generation, we did not sacrifice top-line growth.”
He said despite mounting regulatory risks in some markets, it will likely exceed its 2019 KPI targets for EBITDA growth of 5 per cent to 8 per cent and return on invested capital of 5.2 per cent to 5.6. Revenue growth is forecast to come in slightly below its guidance of 3 per cent to 4 per cent.
In Q3 group net profit fell 9.4 per cent year-on-year to MYR120 million ($28.7 million), though excluding the impact of the M1 disposal, it would have increased 33.5 per cent to MYR248 million.
Revenue increased 3.5 per cent to MYR6.2 billion as a result of improved performance in Indonesia and Bangladesh, along with its tower unit edotco.
XL Axiata in Indonesia grew revenue 16.7 per cent to MYR1.91 billion on the back of strong data usage. Despite being hit by higher depreciation, amortisation and tax costs, it reported a net profit of MYR67.4 million compared with a MYR18.6 million loss in Q3 2018.
Malaysia-based Celcom’s revenue dropped 8.4 per cent to MYR1.66 billion as a result of lower device sales and a reduction of domestic interconnect and roaming rates. Profit declined 2.2 per cent to MYR191 million, mainly due to higher depreciation, amortisation and finance costs.
Robi Axiata posted a 10.1 per cent jump in revenue to MYR938 million, but net profit dropped 64.5 per cent to MYR83.7 million, impacted by a one-off gain recorded in Q3 2018.
A 4.1 per cent fall in revenue at Dialog in Sri Lanka to MYR679 million was caused by a depreciation of the local currency (excluding this, the figure grew 2.9 per cent). Profit declined 20.8 per cent to MYR34.3 million.
Ncell in Nepal posted a 1.1 per cent decline in revenue to MYR492 million and a 37.3 per cent decrease in net profit to MYR113 million, while Smart in Cambodia registered 11.8 per cent revenue growth to MYR337 million underpinned by strong data growth. Its net profit increased 14.2 per cent to MYR83.5 million.
Revenue at edotco grew 15.9 per cent to MYR466 million, while net profit rose 24.4 per cent to MYR103.2 million despite higher depreciation, amortisation, finance and tax costs.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back