Indonesian CDMA operator Bakrie Telecom (BTel) has reported that its total liabilities increased to IDR9.36 trillion (USD766.7 million) at 30 September 2013, from IDR7.40 trillion at end-2012. BTel, controlled by the politically connected Bakrie Group, has also confirmed it is in talks with bondholders on the terms of debts totalling USD380 million. The carrier’s CEO Jastiro Abi told journalists: ‘To resolve debt issues there are many options that we are considering, such as share swaps, rights issues, extending the majority of our debt. But we don’t know what we will do yet and we cannot confirm how much this will reduce debt’.
BTel, whose payroll includes Anindya N Bakrie, son of tycoon and presidential hopeful Aburizal Bakrie, saw 9M13 revenue fall 10.2% year-on-year and an even bigger fall in net profits, due to high costs arising from a plummeting rupiah (IRD) versus the US dollar (USD) in the third quarter. As a result, BTel booked a net loss of IDR1.5 trillion for the period under review, 55.4% higher than in the same period a year earlier, with industry watchers noting that its fortunes are being exacerbated by a loss of market share as users switch to the more ubiquitous GSM platform.