Bangladesh’s largest mobile operator Grameenphone posted solid gains in profit and revenue in Q1 despite a drop in its subscriber base and a large boost in capex.
The operator, a subsidiary of Norway’s Telenor, reported a 4.8 per cent increase in net profit to BDT5.6 billion ($70 million) as revenue for the January-March period grew 9.5 per cent to BDT27.56 billion. Mobile service revenue rose 9.4 per cent to BDT26.4 billion, while customer equipment sales expanded 15 per cent to BDT507 million.
During the quarter its mobile connections dropped by nearly 400,000 to 56.3 million due to the impact of the country’s biometric verification campaign, which started in December. Its user base increased 8 per cent from a year ago.
Grameenphone, which has a 43 per cent market share, increased capex to NOK1.004 billion ($115 million) from NOK370 million a year ago. Operating expenses during the quarter rose 11 per cent, driven partly by a 14 per cent jump in revenue sharing, spectrum charges and licensing fees.