Telia’s outgoing CEO Allison Kirkby (pictured) was buoyant about the company’s telecoms performance in the third quarter, stating its growth accelerated to levels not seen in many years and more than compensated for a weak advertising market.

In an earnings statement, Kirkby explained all of its telco markets are now showing “soild top and bottom-line development”, clearly progressing on its plans to transform the company through a growth strategy laid out almost three years ago.

Revenue in Q3 2023 rose 4.3 per cent to SEK22 billion ($2 billion) year-on-year from SEK21 billion, fuelled by 11 per cent growth in Finland, a 2.7 per cent rise in Norway, increase of 20.4 per cent in Lithuania and 14.1 per cent in Estonia. Revenue in home market Sweden was, however, flat at SEK8.7 billion.

A sour point in the results was continued struggles in the TV and media market, with revenue from the unit falling 6.2 per cent to SEK1.8 billion due to weak advertising and costs related to the launch of a new hybrid service.

Overall net income for the period was up, rising 4 per cent to SEK2 billion.

Bolstered by a strong quarter, Telia upgraded its EBITDA outlook to low-single digits this year over a previous forecast of flat to low-single digit growth.

In Q4, Kirkby said it would place a key focus on a recovery in working capital in the midst of remaining macro uncertainties.

As Kirkby prepares to move to BT Group in January 2024, she added: “It is a stronger Telia that I will transition to the next CEO at the beginning of the next year.”