Axiata Group Berhad reported a strong quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) performance leading to a better first half for 2017. The Asian telecom giant, recently published its quarterly financial report for the second quarter of 2017.
Profit after tax (PAT) was up 82.8 per cent to RM 479.1 million from RM 262.0 million in the previous quarter from improved overall operational performance. Excluding share of losses from the Group’s associate, Idea, which recorded RM 109.4 million loss for the quarter against RM 25.2 million in the previous quarter, Axiata’s PAT for the quarter would have more than doubled for the period, said a statement.
In spite of intense competition in all its markets, revenue for the Group grew by 3.0 per cent to RM 6.1 billion, the Group’s highest quarterly revenue to date, with its mobile operating companies (OpCos) performing better than industry average in their respective markets. Revenue growth was further enhanced by solid growth in data revenue which grew almost 11 per cent QoQ to now account for 44.1 per cent of service revenue solidifying the Group’s data leadership position.
Earnings Before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) for the Group was up by 5.6 per cent QoQ to RM 2.3 billion on the back of greater cost efficiencies derived from its ongoing cost and capex optimisation programme. The initiative delivered approximately RM580 million in savings Group-wide for the quarter.
Year-to-date (YTD) revenue for the Group improved 15.7 per cent to reach RM 11.9 billion, EBITDA grew 12.4 per cent to RM 4.4 billion while PAT was up 17.0 per cent to RM 741.1 million.
The Group’s South Asia operations continued to deliver steady performance with data making higher contributions towards revenue growth. Dialog maintained its resilient performance despite adverse externalities during the period with improved revenue growth across all its business segments. Its cost rescaling initiatives lifted EBITDA margin QoQ by 2.7 percentage points to 35.3%. YTD Dialog’s mobile data revenue grew by 44.1%, accounting for 20.5% of total revenue.
Post the successful integration of Airtel, Robi continued to gain revenue market share of 0.8 percentage point to 27.5% during the quarter while service revenue grew 7.8% to outperform the industry. YTD data revenue grew by 95.6%, accounting for 18.0% of total revenue. Ncell saw an improved quarterly performance with the launch of 4G services in June, driving data revenue growth by 16.9% for date to account for 17.4% of total revenue.