Thai telecoms operator True Group returned to profit in the first quarter of the year as its mobile business experienced strong growth on the back of gains in prepaid and post-paid subscribers.
The company booked a net profit of THB1.51 billion ($47.6 million), reversing a loss of THB673 million in Q1 2018; and a THB3 billion loss in Q4 2018.
Overall service revenue in the recent quarter grew 4.1 per cent to THB25.8 billion, fuelled by a 7.6 per cent increase in mobile service turnover to THB19.1 billion. Equipment sales fell 14.8 per cent to THB3.28 billion.
In a statement, Siripoj Kunakornphan, co-president of True Group, said: “The first quarter performance showed strong improvement with enhanced operational efficiency and high-quality subscriber growth driving service revenue growth and increasing profit.”
True Move, its mobile unit, said the competitive environment became more rational as subsidies and fixed-speed unlimited plans were either toned down or removed, resulting in better oppotunities to grow data revenue and ARPU. Network and bundled offerings remained important acquisition tools, it noted.
The operator said its targeted campaigns and efforts to strengthen its sales channels boosted revenue and subscriber growth in both post-paid and prepaid segments.
Surprisingly, voice and non-voice revenue increased 8.4 per cent year-on-year to THB18 billion, while online revenue (covering internet and business data services) fell 2.8 per cent to THB6.2 billion due to widespread discounts.
It reported 2 million net mobile additions year-on-year to end March with 29.6 million subs, of which 7.7 million were post-paid and 21.9 million prepaid.
Blended ARPU dipped about 1 per cent year-on-year to THB205: prepaid was flat at THB116, while post-paid was down 3.4 per cent to THB458.
Last week, market leader AIS reported a 5.3 per cent drop in Q1 net profit to THB7.62 billion, which it said was mainly due to higher network, depreciation and amorisation costs. Total revenue increased 7.1 per cent to THB43.8 billion, driven in large part by a 7.8 per cent increase in device sales.
Mobile revenue inched up 1.1 per cent to THB31.6 billion.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back