Finland-based telecoms provider Elisa has reported a solid first quarter, recording improvements in revenue, earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) and net profit. In the three months ended 31 March 2014 Elisa generated a total turnover of EUR382.3 million, up from EUR361.3 million a year earlier, with the company citing its acquisition of the telecoms and IT businesses of fixed network operator Osuuskunta PPO, including 100% of PPO-Yhtiot Oy, and PPO’s ownership stakes in Kymen Puhelin Oy and Telekarelia Oy, as a key factor. Meanwhile, it pointed to corporate customers’ ICT services, such as IT outsourcing and video conferencing, and consumer
customers’ online services like the Elisa Viihde IPTV service, as well as mobile services, as having been key drivers for increased turnover.
EBITDA in the first three months of 2014 increased by 15.6% against 1Q13 to reach EUR126 million, with the increase said to be mainly due to the PPO acquisition and ‘productivity improvements’. Profit before tax for the period under review totalled EUR63.7 million, meanwhile, representing a 19.5% increase from the corresponding quarter of 2013, while net profit rose to EUR51.1 million from EUR40.0 million.
As at 31 March 2014 Elisa reported a total of 4.556 million mobile subscribers, of which the lion’s share (3.972 million) were attributed to its domestic unit. In Estonia, meanwhile, the company’s subsidiary had 584,900 mobile accesses at the end of the reporting period, up from 566,100 at end-March 2013. Fixed broadband connections stood at 563,900, up 10.8% year-on-year, though this represented a decline of 0.3% from the end of the previous quarter. Fixed voice customer numbers also continued to dwindle, falling to 222,600 at the end of March 2014 from 234,300 at end-December 2013 (though this was higher than the 220,300 reported at end-March 2013).
Looking ahead, with Elisa saying it expected the macroeconomic environment in Finland to remain weak in 2014, it has said full year revenue is estimated to be ‘at the same level or slightly higher than in 2013’. Full-year EBITDA, excluding non-recurring items, is also forecast at the same level as in 2013 or slightly higher, while full-year capital expenditure is expected to be a maximum of 12% of revenue.