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VENTURES AFRICA – State-owned Telecom Egypt has released its third-quarter financial results which revealed consolidated revenues of LE2.86 billion ($415 million), a 16 percent increase from its 2012 figures of LE2.48 billion ($359.9 million).
Despite posting a 23 percent net profit margin following a reported LE650 million ($94 million) profit after tax, market analysts say the 16 percent growth on earnings fell well below expectations.
“This is 16 percent below our estimate, and is mainly attributable to foreign exchange losses, due to the appreciation of the Egyptian pound against the dollar in that period,” Omar Maher, telecommunications analyst at Cairo-based investment bank EFG Hermes was quoted by local news service, Ahram Online.
Its gross profit margin however stood at 39.5 percent as a result of lower interconnection cost compared to previous quarters.
The North African telecom company did not enjoy similar financial fortunes in its fixed lines business, with its home line subscribers sliding from 6.4 to 5.7 million. It also recorded negative growth in its voice revenues, falling 15.1 percent.
“Voice traffic was negatively impacted by the unforeseen events in the domestic market, along with seasonality pressures (Ramadan in July/August),” the company explained in its financial statement.
Telecom Egypt is 80 percent owned by the government, and is the country’s sole fixed-line services provider.