NTT Docomo prepared for continued costs pressures in fiscal 2023, as rising electricity charges impacted profit in fiscal Q3 2022 (ending 31 December 2022) while its mobile business remained flat.

On its earnings call, senior EVP Hiroki Kuriyama noted electricity costs jumped 40 per cent to about JPY18 billion ($137.5 million), noting its consumer business was impacted the most, as base stations account for a high percentage of the company’s power charges.

The operator noted a government assistance scheme will help mitigate rising energy costs, which are expected to continue climbing in the current quarter and next fiscal year.

Docomo stated it made progress on reducing costs with total operating expenses up 3.6 per cent year-on-year despite the higher power charges.

Its 5G subscriber base more than doubled to 18.1 million, with total mobile subscribers up 3.2 per cent to 86.5 million.

LTE subscribers dropped by 3.7 million to 58.6 million.

Net profit and mobile service revenue were flat at JPY223.7 billion and JPY653.3 billion, respectively. Aggregate ARPU fell 3.2 per cent to JPY4,660.

Equipment sales fell 1.9 per cent to JPY176.8 billion.

Smart Life revenue increased 14.4 per cent to JPY280.1 billion and enterprise sales 14.3 per cent to JPY450.8 billion.

Capex declined 5.2 per cent to JPY448.4 billion.