Irish mobile network operator 3 Ireland, a subsidiary of Hong Kong-based conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa, reduced its net losses by roughly one-third to EUR19 million (USD24.4 million) for the year to 31 December 2012, in a period in which its revenue and market share grew. The cellco booked turnover of EUR174 million last year, a 16% improvement on FY 2011, broken down as service revenue (EUR141 million), sales of handsets (EUR30 million) and ‘additional revenue’ (EUR3 million). The company’s EBITDA losses in full-year 2012 narrowed by 32% to EUR19 million it said, aided by a cut in customer retention costs. Moreover, the carrier – which last year mounted an unsuccessful bid to buy former monopoly Eircom out of examinership status – estimated it increased its mobile market share by 1.3 percentage points to 9% by 31 December 2012 on the back of solid subscriber gains.
3 Ireland closed out 2012 with a total of 819,000 customers in the Republic, including 448,000 pay-as-you-go users. However, the operator notes that only 58% of the total subscriber base is classed as ‘active’, compared to 50% at end-2011, while post-pay customers contributed 79% of total service revenues in fiscal 2012. Average revenue per user (ARPU) improved by 4% to EUR32.22 per month on a twelve-month rolling basis, with sales from non-voice services generating 56% of the total. 3 Ireland CEO Robert Finnegan said the company’s financial results marked a ‘solid performance in a a hotly contested market. ‘Our revenue has gone from EUR98 million in 2010 to EUR174 million in 2012, showing a 78% growth in just two years,’ he added, going on to say that although the overall market is static, 3 Ireland’s growth is not, and that ‘in 2013 with the roll out of 4G, that strong performance will continue’.