Moroccan telco Maroc Telecom has published its financial results for the first quarter of 2013, reporting a 4.7% decline in the group’s revenue to MAD7.18 billion (USD840 million), from MAD7.53 billion in 1Q12, due to slower consumer spending in Morocco. The group’s international operations, however, have increased, with subsidiaries’ contributing revenue growth of 7% to MAD1.84 billion between 1Q12 and 1Q13. Maroc Telecom’s EBITDA amounted to MAD4.23 billion, a paltry increase of 0.1% due to a decline in EBITDA in Morocco, compensated by strong growth in international EBITDA, while the 2.8 points increase in EBITDA margin to 58.9% was attributed to more efficient cost control. The company reported a healthy growth of 14.1% in its overall subscriber base year-on-year, with a total reaching nearly 34 million subscriptions at 31 March 2013, mainly attributed to 32% surge in subsidiaries’ users which attracted a total of 14 million net new customers.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Maroc Telecom’s parent company Vivendi has confirmed the receipt of two binding offers for its 53% stake in Morocco’s telco in April 2013, after both Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) and Ooredoo, formerly Qatar Telecom (Qtel), released statements confirming they had submitted bids for the North African company. The eventual winner must also fund a buyout to minority shareholders; the total purchase price is currently estimated at EUR4.46 billion. However, Since Maroc Telecom is 30% owned by the state, the Moroccan government will have the final say in Vivendi’s eventual choice of acquirer.