SingTel says net profit up 12% Q4

SingTel says net profit up 12% Q4

Singapore: Singapore Telecom (SingTel) said Thursday its net profit rose 12% in the fourth quarter to March from the year before on strong performances at home and regional associates.

SingTel, which has a corporate footprint across the Asia Pacific market, said net profit in the three months to March was 1.02 billion Singapore dollars ($740 million), beating market expectations.

Fourth quarter revenue totalled $4.47 billion dollars, up 25.4% over last year.

For the full year ended 21 March, SingTel earned $3.91 billion, up 13.3%. Full-year revenue was $16.87 billion, representing a 13% increase, the company said in a statement.

“The fourth quarter concluded a successful year for us, despite the global financial crisis," said the SingTel Group’s chief executive Chua Sock Koong.

“With unrelenting focus on execution, we outperformed the markets in Singapore and Australia and met our guidance for the financial year."

Full-year revenue in the home market jumped 8.0% to $6.0 billion, the company said.

Net profit for SingTel’s wholly owned Australian subsidiary Optus for the entire financial year grew 16% to 676 million Australian dollars ($605 million).

“Optus delivered its strongest free cash flow in five years, with full-year free cash flow exceeding one billion Australian dollars," SingTel said.

Full-year pre-tax profit from SingTel’s regional mobile associates was up 19% to 2.30 Singapore dollars, with higher contributions from Indonesia’s Telkomsel.

SingTel has grown beyond the small domestic market to hold strategic stakes in mobile phone companies in Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, the Philippines and Thailand.

On Wednesday, SingTel said its mobile subscriber base across the region rose an annual 17% to 293 million by the end of March.