China Unicom posted a sharp rise in profit in the first quarter of the year, despite a decline in mobile service turnover impacting its broader service revenue.
It increased net profit 22.3 per cent year-on-year to CNY3.68 billion ($547 million), with consolidated revenue falling 2.4 per cent to CNY73.2 billion due to mobile service turnover dropping 5.2 per cent to CNY39.4 billion.
The company said the decline was a result of the cancellation of mobile data roaming fees in July 2018 and intensified market competition. Mobile ARPU declined marginally to CNY41.20.
Overall service revenue was mostly flat, up 0.3 per cent to CNY66.8 billion, with fixed-line increasing 9.4 per cent to CNY26.9 billion. Equipment sales dropped 24 per cent to CNY6.35 billion.
In a statement, the operator said a government speed upgrade and tariff reduction policy, along with intensified market competition continued to pressure the group’s fundamental businesses. It highlighted positives including moves to differentiate its core businesses, and acceleration of efforts to expand capability and scale in new business areas.
“Leveraging the rich resources afforded by its strategic investors, the group strengthened its content portfolio with quality video,” it stated.
It added 10.5 million 4G subscribers in the quarter, taking its total to 230.4 at end-March and pushing LTE penetration to 71.3 per cent.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back