Doha,April,02: Ooredoo is set to launch the ultrafast 4G Long-Term Evolution (LTE) mobile broadband network in the next couple of weeks. The programme will deliver the fastest and largest net work in the country, to support the national plan to boost the knowledge-based economy.
Talking on the sidelines of Ooredoo Annual General Meeting (AGM), Ooredoo Chairman Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Saud Al Thani said the launch of the 4G LTE mobile broadband network would be the centre of Ooredoo Qatar’s strategic growth plans in the year ahead. The cutting-edge facility would be launched in Ooredoo’s international subsidiaries and associates at later stage, he said.
Earlier, the AGM approved recommendation of the Board of Directors to distribute a cash dividend of 50 percent of the nominal share value (QR5 per share).
Sheikh Abdullah said in total, 81.6 percent of Ooredoo’s revenue comes from outside Qatar, with healthy increases in revenue from operating companies in Iraq, Algeria and Indonesia supporting a record-setting performance in its home nation.
The year 2012 was a remarkable year for the company and Ooredoo’s market capitalisation has reached a high QR33.31bn.Ooredoo’s revenue increased by 6.2 percent from QR31.8bn in 2011 to QR33.7bn, with more revenue coming from mobile data and business communication services. Net profit attributable to shareholders also grew from QR2.6bn to QR2.9bn during the same time period. The EBITDA increased by 5.1 percent from QR14.8bn to QR15.5bn, with EBITDA margin posting a solid 46 percent.
Reaching more customers than ever before, Ooredoo’s consolidated customer base grew from 83.4m by the end of 2011 to 92.9m by the end of 2012. Ooredoo also continued to invest in key operations, increasing ownership in Kuwait’s Wataniya and its operations from 52.5 percent to 92.1 percent, and Wataniya and Ooredoo’s stake in Tunisia’s Tunisiana was increasing from 75 percent to 90 percent.
Ooredoo increased its stake in Iraq’s Asiacell from 30 percent to 64.1 percent, as of 4 February 2013. In addition, Asiacell’s IPO in February 2013 was successfully completed.
The company has also seen strong response to its life-enhancing services that have been making a difference every day. Ooredoo provides small businesses in Qatar with cutting-edge Cloud solutions, empowers women in Iraq with special tailored-services, and enables customers to send money using their mobile phones in Qatar and Tunisia.
In Qatar, Ooredoo has continued to deliver leading products and services, with more than 36,000 customers for the Ooredoo Fibre home broadband network and 131,000 homes passed for later activation, by the end of 2012. The company’s Mobile Money service has also recently reached the milestone of 100,000 registered users.
Group CEO Dr Nasser Marafih noted the flagship operator Ooredoo Qatar exceeded QR6bn in revenue for the first time in company history. ”Our operator with the largest customer base, Indosat in Indonesia, increased its consolidated customers to 58.6m and full-year revenue to QR8.8bn. Asiacell in Iraq crossed 10m consolidated customer milestone.”
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