Qatar's Ooredoo reports 44% rise in Q2 net profit

Telecoms group previously knowns as Qtel makes $253.5m profit in the second quarter

Second-quarter profit at Qatari telecom Ooredoo soared 44 percent on Tuesday, beating analysts' estimates on increased revenue from the group's units in Iraq and Indonesia.

The former monopoly, which operates in about 16 countries across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, made a net profit of QR923m ($253.5m) in the three months to June 30, up from QR641m in the year-earlier period.

Analysts polled by Reuters had on average forecast a quarterly profit of QR845.31m.

Second-quarter revenue totalled QR8.7bn, compared with QR8.3bn a year ago, a company statement said.

Revenue from Indonesia in the first half grew 6.8 percent year-on-year to QR4.38bn, it said. Iraq first-half revenue grew 5.3 percent year-on-year to QR3.50bn.

Earlier this month Kuwaiti telecom Wataniya, an Ooredoo subsidiary, posted a 20 percent rise in second-quarter profit, reversing a five consecutive quarter profit decline.

Ooredoo's consolidated customer base grew 10 percent year-on-year, the statement said.

Ooredoo has spent about $3.9 billion since the start of 2012, increasing its stakes in some foreign units, taking majority control of Iraq's Asiacell, while it now owns 90 percent or more of Kuwait's Wataniya and Tunisia's Tunisiana.

The firm also plans to invest $15bn in Myanmar after winning a telecom licence in the Asian country in June.

Ooredoo announced in June it had withdrawn its bid for Vivendi's 53 percent stake in Maroc Telecom. Last week Vivendi said it was in exclusive talks to sell the stake for 4.2 billion euros ($5.6bn) to Etisalat .

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