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Ooredoo Group announces increased revenue of QR7.3bn in first quarter

Ooredoo Group has announced an increased revenue of QR7.3bn for the first quarter of 2010 (Q1, 2020). The revenue growth of 1 percent year-on-year to QR7.3bn was supported by robust growth in Indonesia, Tunisia, Myanmar and other markets, which was partially offset by a COVID-19 impact, a reduction in handset sales and macroeconomic weakness in some of Ooredoo Group’s other markets.

The Group net profit attributable to Ooredoo shareholders declined by 8 percent to QR387m in Q1 2020, compared to the same period last year, due to the reduction in EBITDA which was partially offset by a more favourable Foreign Exchange environment compared to the same period last year. Data revenues accounted for more than 50 percent of total Revenue driven by our data leadership and digital transformation initiatives across the countries we operate in.

Ooredoo Group has healthy cash reserve and liquidity levels to be able to absorb the impact of COVID-19 for the year 2020. Commenting on the results, Sheikh Faisal bin Thani Al Thani, Chairman of Ooredoo, said: “Ooredoo Group delivered a healthy set of results for the start of the year, reporting a 1 percent increase in revenues to QR7.3bn in Q1 2020 compared to the same period last year.”

Sheikh Faisal said the world is going through an unprecedented challenge as we all come together to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic. While the telecom sector is defensive and more resilient than others, Ooredoo Group expects to see some negative impact on our operations, similar to other global telecom operators. However, Ooredoo Group has a strong balance sheet, a welldiversified portfolio geographically and a diversified customer mix across prepaid, postpaid and enterprise, all of which will help us navigate these challenging times.

He said: “The investments we have made and continue to make in our digital transformation have ensured our business continuity and enabled us to provide essential services and uninterrupted connectivity for our customers during these uncertain times. During the period we upgraded our 4G network in Myanmar to the most advanced level in the country and in our home market of Qatar we took another step towards nationwide 5G coverage by deploying Spectrum Sharing sites which enables the running of 4G and 5G traffic simultaneously on the same frequency.”

At Ooredoo our key priorities are clear: the health and safety of our employees and customers, as well as the continued provision of uninterrupted and high-quality services for our consumer and business customers, Sheikh Faisal added. Also commenting on the results, Sheikh Saud bin Nasser Al Thani, Group Chief Executive Officer of Ooredoo said: “In Q1 2020 Ooredoo Group has increased our revenue and we have delivered good results Growth was driven by strong performances in most of our markets, and in particular in Indonesia and Tunisia where revenues grew 7 percent and 16 percent respectively, supported by Indosat Ooredoo’s refreshed strategy and the implementation of Ooredoo Tunisia’s value creation plan.

Business in Myanmar has been growing as well. Ooredoo Qatar continues to be our highest revenue generator, reporting QAR 1.8 billion in total revenues for Q1 2020.” Sheikh Saud noted the implementation of nationwide lockdowns across many of the geographies impacted EBITDA as margins came under pressure due to changing customer behaviour.

EBITDA for Q1 2020 was QR3.0bn compared to QR3.2bn for the same period last year. “We continue to implement strong cost optimisation programmes across all our OpCos to manage some of the impact from the pandemic and weakening economic activity,” he said. “Our leading digital infrastructure and focus on customer experience enabled us to grow our user base by 6% during the first quarter of 2020 compared to the same period last year. Our digital platforms and home deliveries enabled our customers to avail our services and manage their accounts from the safety of their homes.

In Oman, we continued to deliver double digit growth in fixed revenues, in Iraq, we increased our customer base, while in Tunisia we maintained our number 1 position by customer market share.” Ooredoo Qatar reported stable revenue of QR1.8bn. EBITDA stood at QR966m. Customer numbers stood at 3.3 million. The company saw an increase in digital sales and digital service revenue during the period. Network innovation continued to be a priority.

Ooredoo Qatar’s content and entertainment services saw good growth, with a growing customer base for Ooredoo tv. The company also continued to drive 5G progress with more than 100,000 customers signing up to the new Shahry 5G and Qatarna 5G plans.

Towards the end of the period, Ooredoo Qatar saw some business impact from the COVID-19 outbreak, particularly on B2B revenue. The company launched the #StayHomeWithOoredoo campaign, which included dedicated offers and services for customers, and increased bandwidth allowance for school and university customers for free, to support distance learning

Source: The Peninsula

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