StarHub – BT

StarHub Q2 profit up 6.8% to $80.8m

It intends to pay minimum dividend of 15.5 cents per share for this year

STARHUB’s net profit rose 6.8 per cent year-on-year to $80.8 million for the second quarter as it continued to add new customers amid fierce competition. For the three months ended June 30, 2007, earnings per share rose to 4.48 cents from 3.53.

The telco declared a second-quarter dividend of four cents a share, and intends to pay a minimum annual cash dividend of 15.5 cents per share for financial year 2007.

StarHub’s Ebitda – earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation – rose 13 per cent to $163.7 million, while Ebitda margin on service revenue was up 0.9 point to 35.3 per cent. Group operating revenue rose 10.1 per cent to $489.1 million.

On a half-year basis, net profit was up 10 per cent at $150.7 million, while turnover rose 10.4 per cent to $961.8 million.

In the second-quarter, mobile revenue was up 12 per cent to $252.9 million, while mobile customer base expanded 19 per cent to 1.63 million.

StarHub has maintained its cable TV sales at $81.7 million, even though there was no World Cup revenue this year. This was achieved with the cable TV customer base growing 4 per cent to 496,000, registering a household penetration of 44.1 per cent compared with 42.8 per cent a year ago. StarHub said it is committed to delivering more value to customers.

‘The recent unveiling of our HubStation, HSPA services and BPL ‘live’ broadcasts over cable TV, mobile, and broadband are taking hubbing to the next level. We will continue enhancing our customers’ lifestyles by offering them the most innovative services with more choices, value and convenience,’ said chief executive officer Terry Clontz.

StarHub has renewed its rights to English football’s Premier League for another three years at a much higher cost, and earlier announced that it will pass on some of that cost to viewers.

In the second quarter, its broadband revenue rose 16 per cent to $62.1 million, while broadband subscription-based customers jumped 12 per cent to 334,000 customers at the end of the quarter.

Sales from fixed network grew 11 per cent to $66.5 million, due mainly to the higher margin data & Internet services, which was driven by demand for its domestic and international lease circuits’ services.

For the full-year, the company expects revenue to post high single-digit growth, and Ebitda margin on service revenue to be around 34 per cent.

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