Tele2 Group CEO Kjell Johnsen (pictured) maintained a bullish tone in the operator’s Q1 earnings statement, expressing confidence it would distribute an extraordinary dividend later in the year as the future becomes more predictable.

The operator stated it could distribute an additional SEK2.1 billion ($250 million) to shareholders, equating to SEK3 per share, which is expected to be paid out during July if approved by the board. The additional payout will not impact its ordinary dividend, subject to approval at its AGM later this month.

Normal on the way
Johnsen explained while Tele2 was “not back to normal yet”, the company had been disciplined and delivered in the face of Covid-19 (coronavirus) headwinds, executing on a business transformation programme and performing well in the Baltics.

Revenue was flat on an organic basis at SEK6.6 billion, attributed to lower activity as its market face pandemic-related restrictions.

However, Baltics revenue delivered “continued impressive performance”, growing 8 per cent year-on-year to SEK763 million, driven by strong average spend per user from continued data monetisation.

Overall mobile revenue was flat at SEK1.4 billion, with growth in equipment sales offsetting reduced termination rates and end-user service gains.

Net profit fell by SEK300 million to SEK900 million, although underlying EBITDA of SEK2.3 billion increased 6 per cent, through cost savings, low commercial spend and bad debt provisions.

Johnsen said Tele2 would shift focus towards successful initiatives for the post-pandemic world, including unlocking the full potential of fixed-mobile convergence (FMC) in Sweden and working towards a target of reducing costs by at least SEK1 billion by the end of 2022.