25 Aug 2010 13:24

Comstar boosts net profit 63% to $48.8 mln in Q2

MOSCOW. Aug 25 (Interfax) - Comstar-UTS boosted US GAAP net profit 63% in the second quarter year-on-year to $48.8 million, the company said in a statement.

Revenue rose 13% to $411.1 million and OIBDA was up 10% to $164.5 million, but the margin edged down to 40% from 41%.

The results are in line with market expectations. Analysts at investment companies and banks told Interfax in a consensus forecast that Comstar would post a net profit of $51.7 million on $412.4 million in revenue and OIBDA at $164.9 million.

The company's operational costs went up by 15% to $246.6 million while operational profit increased by 10% to $115.7 million.

The company's net profit in rubles for April-June went up by 52% to 1.46 billion rubles while sales revenue increased by 6% to 12.4 billion rubles. Expenditures increased by 8% to 7.5 billion rubles while OIBDA went up by 3% to 4.97 billion rubles.

Comstar UTS' capex in the second quarter came to 140.7 million compared to 15.5 million a year previous while free cash flow decreased from $48.9 million from $86.7 million.

The company's account cash flow went up by 200% year-on-year to $551.9 million.

Comstar UTS' consolidate debt went up 2% to 29.3 billion rubles in comparison with the previous quarter. This debt includes a loan facility from Sberbank worth 26.6 billion rubles and MTS credit worth 1.8 billion rubles, as well as debt owed to equipment suppliers valued at 400 million rubles.

The company's net debt dropped to 12.1 billion rubles from 12.8 billion rubles posted in the first quarter.

Comstar-UTS' sales revenue for fixed line telephone services as provided by Moscow City Telephone Network (MGTS) went up by 7% year-on-year to 7.07 billion rubles while OIBDA increased by 6% to 3.7 billion rubles. The company's profit margin for the segment decreased to 47.2% from a previous 47.7%.

Sales revenue generated in Moscow's alternative segment went up by 3% to 3.2 billion rubles while operational expenses increased by 14% to 2.8 billion rubles. OIBDA for the segment went down by 36% to 528 million as the margin declined from 25.1% to 15.9%.

The company's expenditures in this segment went up because of rising inter-operator payments in light of expanding long-distance communications traffic and more calls being made through cellular networks. In addition, Comstar-UTS increased its expenses for marketing and sales.

The number of subscribers in this segment went for both individuals, (by 10%) to 568,000, and corporate clients (by 2%) to 28,000. The subscriber base in the private sector contracted by 3% in comparison with the first quarter but remained unchanged in the corporate sector.

The company's average monthly revenue per user (ARPU) for individual clients went up by 8% to 570 rubles in comparison with the first quarter. This indicator for corporate clients slipped by 1% to 13,500 rubles.

Sales revenue for the alternative segment in Russia and the CIS went up by 10% year-on-year for the second quarter to 2.1 billion rubles while OIBDA increased by 47% to 742 million rubles.

The number of subscribers with broadband access from Comstar-UTS increased by 6% to 1.44 million clients in comparison with the first quarter. The individual subscriber base in Moscow for the second quarter went up by 1% to 867,000 persons while Average monthly Revenue Per User (ARPU) slipped by 6% to 283 rubles.

Comstar-UTS' subscriber base for broadband access for corporate services decreased by 2% to 45,000 while ARPU in this is edged up by 1% to 3,960 rubles.

The company's individual broadband clients in Russia's regions and CIS countries increased by 16% to 495,000 persons in comparison with the first quarter. AT the same time, ARPU for this segment went down by 4% to 286 rubles.

The company's subscriber base for broadband Internet se3rvices for the corporate sector in the regions increased by 6% to 30,000 clients while ARPU dipped by 3% to 2,290 rubles.

The subscriber base for paid TV in the regions went up by 3% to 2.06 million persons.