Orascom Telecom Q1 net profit seen at $45 million

Reuters, Sunday 13 May 2012

Analysts predict an upswing in profits for Egypt-based communication giant when it reports results on Monday, helped by a mild rise in earnings and stable currencies

Orascom Telecom (OT) is expected to post a first-quarter net profit of $45 million on Monday, following a net loss in the fourth quarter of 2011 when it was weighed down by currency losses and impairment charges, according to analysts.

The Egypt-based company, which has operations in Algeria, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Canada, should post a profit for the quarter in the absence of major currency effects, along with flat revenue quarter-on-quarter and a slight improvement in EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) margin, said CI Capital's Amr El-Alfy.
Orascom Telecom's net income attributable to equity holders soared in the first quarter of 2011 to $813 million from $49 million in the same period of 2010 after it accounted for gains from the sale of a stake in its Tunisian unit.
The firm posted a net loss of $83 million before minority interests in the fourth quarter of 2011 due to impairment charges and after the Bank of Algeria instructed banks not to process any overseas foreign currency transfers for its Orascom Telecom Algeria unit.
Russia's Vimpelcom bought Orascom Telecom's parent company from Egypt's Sawiris family in April 2011. The results are due on Monday after the close of stock market trading.
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