By Bernd Debusmann Jr
Etisalat's subscriber base grew to 12.7 million in the first quarter of the year
UAE-based telecoms operator Etisalat Group posted AED 2.2 billion ($598.9m) in net profit for the first three months of the year, a 2% drop on same quarter last year.
In a statement, Etisalat said that total earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of AED 6.7 billion ($1.8bn), a 1.5 percent increase from the same time period a year before.
The decrease in profit was attiributed to to higher depreciation and amortisation expenses, higher forex losses, and higher financing costs.
Consolidated revenues amounted to AED 13.1 billion ($3.5bn).
“Etisalat’s performance in the first quarter reflects our agility in dealing with unprecedented market challenges and pressures facing the telecom sector globally,” said Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, the chairman of Etisalat Group.
“Through our dedicated teams, we were geared to fully support and serve the community showcasing infrastructure preparedness to deliver access to vital telecom services during today’s extraordinary times.
“Moving ahead, we remain optimistic about the future as there are immense opportunities in the midst of the challenges and pressures faced by the telecom sector globally,” he added.
According to Etisalat Group, the company’s subscriber base grew to 12.7 million subscribers in Q1, while the aggregate subscriber base reached 150 million, a 5 percent year-on-year increase.
Etisalat board of directors approved an interim dividend payout of 25 fils per share.