Telia profits double despite fixed-line problems

Swedish-Finnish phone operator Telia Sonera has reported earnings before deductions of 7.928 billion kronor, buoyed by improved margins in its mobile operations and higher sales. The profits were nearly double those of the same quarter last year.

Sales increased 4.5 percent to 22.7 billion kronor.

The profits were above average market forecasts of 7.830 billion kronor, as recorded by SME Direkt.

But the second quarter report also contained disappointments, with earnings from Swedish fixed line operations 12 percent lower than average forecasts.

During the second quarter the number of fixed line retail customers in Sweden fell by 91,000. This corresponds to 1,000 lost subscriptions a day. However, the company said that 42,000 of this subscriptions were transferred to its wholesale services.

There was a big jump in the number of broadband customers in Sweden, with the number of subscribers increasing by 220,000 over the past year. The figure now stands at 819,000.

Mobile traffic increased 15 percent since the same period last year, and the company reported that use of mobile data services had increased sharply. The number of mobile customers increased by 124,000 to 4,439,000.

The company’s CEO, Anders Igel, welcomed the results.

“The strong performance continued in the second quarter with close to 5 percent growth and a higher margin by almost 2 percentage points,” he said.

“The result from our operations increased more than 40 percent to a new record of SEK 6.3 billion. The strong performance was driven by good development in most operations, successful implementation of synergies from acquisitions and effects from ongoing efficiency measures.”