Swedish telecoms group TeliaSonera reported that net revenues in local currencies, excluding acquisitions and disposals, decreased by 1.8% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2014, although in reported currency, net revenue decreased 2.5% to SEK23.972 billion (USD3.633 billion). EBITDA minus non-recurring items was flat year-on-year in local currencies, excluding acquisitions and disposals, but in reported currency EBITDA, excluding one-off items, decreased 1.9% to SEK8.345 billion, although the EBITDA margin improved slightly to 34.8% in January-March 2014 from 34.6% in the same period of 2013. Operating income excluding non-recurring items fell by 5.2% y-o-y to SEK6.286 billion in Q1 2014, while quarterly net income attributable to owners of the parent company dropped 4.0% to SEK3.945 billion.
Johan Dennelind, CEO of TeliaSonera, said in a statement: ‘Our markets continue to be characterised by a changing customer behaviour and an evolving convergence trend. We stay focused on upgrading our customers’ internet experience through further investments in 4G and fibre. In Sweden, our 4G coverage has approached 90% of population and we remain committed to reach 99% by the end of this year…. On April 1, we implemented a new country based operating model with strengthened commercial and technology functions on group level. This will be instrumental for our future strategic agenda and will also enable further efficiency benefits. Our journey ahead will be based on three pillars; strengthen and develop our core business in the Nordic and Baltic region, take Eurasia to the next level by monetising on the data opportunity and examine possible income opportunities in closely related adjacent industries. Geographically, focus remains on the markets where we are already present, with strict criteria for return on capital. We have a prudent but pragmatic approach to M&A and will mainly aim for potential consolidation opportunities in existing markets.’