Etisalat’s Q2 net profit falls 15 pct as impairments weigh

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The United Arab Emirates-based telecoms operator Etisalat posted a 14.7 percent drop in second quarter net profit attributable to shareholders as impairments rose, its full financial report showed on Thursday.

The country’s largest telecoms operator issued a statement on Wednesday to say its net profit rose 6 percent, but it did not provide a breakdown of its net profit attributable to shareholders, a measure closely watched by investors.

On that basis, net profit was $536.40 million (1.97 billion UAE dirham) in the second quarter compared with 2.31 billion dirhams in the prior-year period, a bourse filing showed.

The lower profit was due to higher impairments and a slump in revenues.

Impairments totaled 184.72 million dirhams versus 21.9 million dirhams a year earlier. Revenues totaled 12.83 billion dirhams, against 13.32 billion dirhams.

SICO Bahrain and EFG Hermes forecast a quarterly profit of 2.19 billion and 2.18 billion dirhams respectively.

Interim dividend

Etisalat will distribute an interim dividend of 40 fils per share for the first half of 2017, the statement said.

The company’s UAE subscriber base reached 12.4 million up 2 percent from a year earlier.

Earlier this month, Etisalat terminated a management agreement with its Nigerian arm, while giving the business time to phase out the Etisalat brand in Nigeria.

Etisalat had a 45 percent stake in the Nigerian business.

Etisalat operates across the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Its shares were up 1.36 percent late morning trade.

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