UAE's first and bigger telecom group Etisalat on Wednesday reported 2.1 per cent growth in consolidated net profit for the first nine months of 2019 to Dh6.73 billion as subscriber numbers increased.
The company's global subscriber base reached 148 million, an increase of five per cent year-on-year. In the UAE, the subscriber base reached to 12.4 million subscribers. While its 9-month net consolidated revenues decreased 1.3 per cent or Dh508 million to Dh38.8 billion. In the third-quarter, revenues fell from Dh13.15 billion to Dh12.97 billion.
Etisalat's third-quarter net profit attributable to owners of the company remained unchanged at Dh2.28 billion. Saleh Abdullah Al Abdooli, CEO, Etisalat Group said the group channelled its efforts towards leading the digital transformation with the successful roll out of 5G networks while equipping its operations with the next-gen of technologies like AI and robotics.
"As we move into the 5G era, it has opened a world of opportunities enabling the deployment of innovative solutions and services across different sectors which will accelerate digital growth, drive efficiencies, and enrich the overall customer experience," he said.
"With continuous collaboration with our partners in the public and private domains, we are well geared to deliver 5G innovative solutions that will alter and reshape our society and industry on a large scale. Our investments in Etisalat's infrastructure and human capabilities have given us confidence moving forward to achieve our strategic goals to meet the current and future needs of our customers across our operations."
Earnings per share (EPS) amounted to Dh0.51 in the first half of 2019; a three per cent increase from the same period last year. Last week, Etisalat successfully completed the first end-to-end 5G Standalone call in the UAE and has become the first operator in the Mena region to achieve this milestone. In May 2019, Etisalat was the first telecom operator in Mena to enable its customers to experience the power of the 5G network and release the first 5G handset before many others. The group approved future capital projects and investment amounting to Dh8.9 billion as against Dh5.2 billion last year. Its shares rose slightly on Wednesday to Dh16.7.