Orascom Telecom profits up by 1172 per cent during first quarter

Marwa Hussein, Thursday 19 May 2011

The selling of Tunisiana and good performances in Bangladesh, Pakistan and Canada helped strongly boost OTH's profits

(Photo: Reuters)

Orascom Telecom Holding (OTH) has posted LE4.9 billion in the first quarter of 2011 compared to LE387.7 million during the same period last year, registering a spectacular growth of 1172 per cent. The company justified the jump in profits through the sale of OTH’s entire shareholdings in the Tunisia Holding and Carthage Consortium which generated a gain of US$754 million, Orascom stated in a release.

EBITDA (Earnings before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortisation) reached US$437 million: an increase of 11 per cent compared to the same period last year and a definitive indicator to measure the real performance of the company.

Total subscribers exceeded 104 million, an increase of 16 per cent over the same period last year.

OTH performance in Bangladesh, Pakistan and Canada helped strongly boost its profits while Egypt and Algeria branches negatively impacted the company’s performance. "The political circumstances in Egypt had a noticeable impact on the performance for Mobinil, where the forced shut-down of voice and data services for several days led to declining ARPU and usage,” said the company on its website, adding that OTH, which is based in Cairo witnessed business interruptions during recent periods of unrest yet continues to remain resilient and optimistic in light of the resulting country-wide economic and political pressures.

Mobinil profits regressed by 93.6 per cent during the first quarter 2011 compared to the same period last year, registering LE22.7 million.

About Djezzy, OTH’s branch in Algeria, the company said that the extreme situation in Algeria continues to hinder the growth for Djezzy, adding that: "Restrictions on foreign currency transfers, import bans and advertising bans on government-owned television have been countered to the extent possible by effective cost management in the Algerian business unit." However revenues showed a 6 per cent growth compared to the first quarter of 2010, while EBITDA grew by 14 per cent.

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