Telecom giant Etisalat Group reported on Tuesday a three per cent year-on-year surge in consolidated net profit to Dh4.6 billion for 2020 first-half.
The company also announced an interim dividend of 15 fils per share for the second quarter, bringing dividend for the first-half to 40 fils per share.
In a statement, the group said its consolidated revenues hit Dh25.6 billion as its global subscriber base reached 146 million, representing a year over year increase of two per cent. In the UAE, the subscriber base reached 11.8 million in the first half.
The group's consolidated Ebitda (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) totalled Dh13.2 billion resulting in a margin of 52 per cent.
Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, chairman of Etisalat, said the group has delivered a good performance in the first half of 2020 considering the circumstances. "Etisalat managed to adapt, respond and demonstrate resilience as we ensured the delivery of uninterrupted services to our customers and had the privilege of supporting our society through various initiatives."
He said that the telecom group is witnessing an opportunity to fast track digital transformation. The unconventional conditions have spurred the adoption of digital services, bridging a divide by changing customers' behaviour towards digital channels.
"Etisalat's innovative solutions have catered for the social distancing era, it has enabled remote working and education, it minimised human interactions and increased the pace of automation. Our infrastructure has accommodated the surge in requirements and is ready for more acceleration in digital adoption," said Al Tayer.
Hatem Dowidar, acting CEO, Etisalat Group, & CEO Etisalat International, said the group's financial performance is a testimony of the strong foundations Etisalat was built on and a reflection of a robust network playing a pivotal role in harnessing solutions and services enabling governments, industries and communities to accelerate digital transformation.
"Despite the global economic pressure, Etisalat is confidently moving forward and progressing positively in enabling societies across its operations. We will continue to focus on capitalising opportunities and enhancing overall customer experience while delivering long-term value for all our shareholders," said Dowidar
"I would like to thank the UAE leadership for positioning the country as one of the most competitive nations globally. Despite the headwinds posed by today's extraordinary times we continue to pursue our digital goals to meet the distinctive needs of all customers. I would also like to extend appreciation to our shareholders and loyal customers for their sustained confidence during this period," he added.
During the lockdown, the group launched multiple initiatives to support 'Stay at Home' directive including free internet to families to facilitate access to distance learning services. More than 10 million Etisalat mobile subscribers enjoyed free browsing to over 800 websites related to education, health and safety.
Etisalat also unveiled the 5G-enabled smart patrol for Dubai Police, a first in the Middle East and North Africa region.