United Internet, which provides internet access under the brand name 1&1, has reported a 9.8% year-on-year rise in full year 2011 consolidated revenue to EUR2.094 billion (USD2.75 billion), according to preliminary figures. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) totalled EUR364.8 million for the twelve-month period, an increase of 2.0% compared to EUR357.7 million in 2010, while EBIT rose 1.7% to EUR276.0 million despite heavy investment in the development of new products and further international expansion, as well as increased marketing expenditure. The earnings figures include a positive net balance of EUR18.7 million from the sale of Versatel shares in the second quarter of 2011. United Internet added 910,000 new fee-based customer contracts in 2011, around 50% more than the 610,000 reported in the year-ago period, bringing the total number of customer contracts to 10.67 million. ‘We set new records in both sales and customer contract figures while also improving earnings,’ commented Ralph Dommermuth, CEO of United Internet, adding: ‘This strong contract growth has laid the foundation for the company’s continued successful development. We are optimistic about our future prospects.’
The internet access segment saw sales rise 11.2% from EUR1.230 billion in 2010 to EUR1.368 billion in 2011, driven by a rise in the number of fee-based contracts by 450,000 to 4.08 million at the end of 2011, due mainly to strong demand for 1&1 mobile internet products. The segment also reported a 24.2% year-on-year rise in EBITDA to EUR152.3 million (compared to EUR122.6 million in 2010), while EBIT jumped 32.8% from EUR92.0 million in 2010 to EUR122.2 million twelve months later, despite a significant increase in costs for new customer acquisition, especially for smartphone subsidising in the mobile internet business.
United Internet has said it forecasts revenue will rise by approximately 15% in 2012. Depending on the size of investments this year, consolidated EBIT is expected to reach between EUR243 million and EUR281 million. Based on strong customer growth in 2012, the company said it anticipates a significant improvement in earnings in 2013, both in its established and in its new business fields.