International operator Vimpelcom Ltd, the flagship operation of which is Russia’s third largest mobile operator, has reported a year on year increase of 185% for its Q3 profit. Despite group revenues for the quarter dropping 6 per cent year on year to $5.75bn, Vimpelcom’s profits leapt to $538m.
Revenues were affected by the appreciation of the US Dollar as well as, in some markets—Italy in particular—the impact of regulation on mobile termination rates. EBITDA dropped by 2 per cent on the same period last year, to $2.53bn, although EBITDA margin increased slightly to 44%.
Net debt was down two per cent sequentially to $22.6bn, with the firm’s net debt/EBITDA at 2.4. The firm has pledge to get this metric below 2 by the end of 2014.
Jo Lunder, CEO of the Amsterdam-headquartered company, said: ““We have made further good progress in the execution of our strategy, with strong organic growth in Group revenue and EBITDA. The EBITDA margin of 44% is the highest reported since completion of the Wind Telecom acquisition in April 2011.”
He added that the firm delivered seven per cent organic revenue growth in emerging markets, with revenue growth of seven per cent in Russia driven by a 38 per cent improvement in data revenue growth.
“We are delivering on our objectives and our focus will remain on delivering profitable growth leading to increased cash flows,” Lunder said.