Millicom CEO Mauricio Ramos (pictured) hailed the company’s focus on recruiting 4G subscribers and deploying cable networks across its Latin American footprint for delivering solid growth in Q3.
During the period, the operator group reported a 52 per cent year-on-year jump in the number of 4G connections across its consumer units to 8.6 million. At the end of September, 4G represented 27 per cent of its total connections.
Increasing its cable footprint in Latin America is one of Millicom’s strategic priorities for the region. Earlier this month, the company announced it was set to bolster its cable assets further with a $1 billion acquisition of Panama cable company Cable Onda. Ramos expects the company to complete the deal by the year-end.
The CEO noted strong growth in Millicom’s units in Colombia, Bolivia and Guatemala and added the upcoming acquisition of Cable Onda “accelerates our expansion into cable, it completes our footprint in Central America and it gives us a strong market leadership position in Panama.”
Service revenue increased year-on-year across each of its markets in Latin America except El Salvador and Costa Rica.
In El Salvador, “one-off items”, operational challenges and “improving the quality” of its customer-base caused a 7.7 per cent drop in service revenue to $90 million. In Costa Rica service revenue declined 1.4 per cent due predominantly to operational changes and a loss of two large customers in its B2B unit.
At its Africa business, which comprises mobile operations in Tanzania and Chad, revenue was broadly flat. Millicom added it was continuing to feel the impact of tax increases in the region.
Underlying Q3 profit was $68 million, up from $21 million in the same quarter of 2017. Revenue was broadly flat at $1.5 billion.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back