Senegal-based fixed and mobile operator Sonatel, a 42.30%-owned subsidiary of the Orange Group, has reported consolidated net profit of XOF91.559 billion (USD186.5 million) for the first six months of this year, up 5.21% from the XOF87.019 billion figure reported in January-June 2012. The Group, which also has operations in Guinea, Guinea-Bissau and Mali, said consolidated revenue also improved, growing by 10.3% over the same period to XOF356.824 billion from XOF323.619 billion. The strong performance were driven by a recovery in Mali where Sonatel noted that the resolution of the political crisis there has resulted ‘in positive effects on the macroeconomic situation’, and a return to growth in terms of both subscribers and sales. Further, in Guinea Sonatel noted that Orange has become the market leader with a near 42% market share at mid-2013, as it deployed 58 new cell sites and boosted its user base to over 2.4 million. Meanwhile, in Guinea-Bissau the Group said that ‘despite the instability of the political situation, Orange has taken part of the market share from the main competitor (+4 points) and keeps improving its financial performance’. As at 30 June 2013 the Group reported an overall customer base of 20.171 million, compared with 15.895 million a year earlier, broken down as 19.767 million mobile users, 285,209 (fixed line) and 117,989 (internet subscribers. In its home market Sonatel had 7.362 million mobile subscribers at end-June 2013, up 16% year-on-year, while in Mali the cellular base climbed 24% to 9.502 million. Strong rises were also reported in Guinea (+25% y-o-y) to 2.470 million and Guinea-Bissau (+42%) to 431,196.
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