Financial

Qtel blames competition, forex for profit decline

Qatari telecoms incumbent Qtel has blamed heightened competition and currency movements for a sharp fall in profit during the first half of 2012.

At 1.35 billion riyals ($371 million), net income was 11.8% down on the figure reported for the first half of 2011, despite a 6.1% increase in revenues to 16.4 billion riyals.

Qtel says the bottom line was hit by adverse foreign exchange movement in Indonesia and Algeria. Excluding the impact of currency fluctuations, operational results showed profit growth of 9%, it claims.

Mobile internet demand boosts Allot second-quarter profit

Reuters

Allot Communications , which supplies technology that allows telecoms operators to monitor and allocate bandwidth, posted a forecast-beating rise in quarterly profit as revenues rose more than 40 percent, helped by surging demand for fast internet on mobile devices.

However, the initial positive reaction that sent Allot's Tel Aviv shares 2.7 per cent higher by the close was tempered by concern over deal flow and the company's simultaneous announcement of its second acquisition in four months.

Operators, vendors report largely disappointing results

A round-up of the most important results announcements over the past few days.

OPERATORS

Latin American heavyweight América Móvil reported a 45% year-on-year fall in net profit to 13.3 billion pesos (US$1 billion), despite a 9.3% increase in revenues to 191.7 billion pesos. The decline was partly down to the weakness of local currencies, which also drove up the cost of handset subsidies. América Móvil says that with more customers opting for smartphones it is seeing pressure on its margins.

du notes profit gains, market share loss

du, the number two operator in the United Arab Emirates, has said it will focus on profitability and worry less about market share, after reporting second-quarter results earlier this week.

The operator reported an impressive 57.1% increase in net income, year on year, to 651 million dirhams ($177 million), but noted a slight fall in its mobile market share, to 46.5%, due to renewed competition from rival Etisalat.

AT&T authorizes share buyback worth $11 billion

AT&T’s board of directors today authorized a share buyback of up to 300 million additional shares.

The amount of shares represents about 5% of its outstanding stock and would be worth some $11.1 billion according to Friday’s closing price.

“This action allows us to continue returning cash to our shareholders through dividends and buybacks while maintaining a strong balance sheet and investing in the future of our business,” said Randall Stephenson, AT&T’s chairman and chief executive.

Iliad puts France Telecom on defensive

French telecoms incumbent France Telecom has managed to slow its loss of mobile-phone customers, many of whom were believed to be defecting to new rival Iliad.

France Telecom lost a staggering 615,000 customers in the first quarter of the year, when Iliad first entered the market, but customer losses for the second quarter were a less troubling 155,000.

Iliad has an established fixed broadband operation in France but won a licence to provide mobile-phone services in 2009, finally launching earlier this year.

Apple blames rare miss on new iPhone anticipation, economy

Reuters

Apple Inc results fell short of Wall Street's lofty expectations as a sagging European economy and a pause in iPhone sales ahead of a new version saw revenues slip from the previous quarter.

Shares fell more than 5 percent to $570.81 in late trade after the world's most valuable technology company - which beats expectations with near regularity - reported its second quarterly miss in less than a year.

Apple's suppliers also felt the pain. Shares of LG Display, Toshiba and Hon Hai sank between 5 and 7 percent.

TI sees third-quarter revenue hurt by weak orders

Reuters

Texas Instruments Inc's second-quarter profit beat Wall Street expectations but the company warned that its third-quarter revenue would be weaker than usual for this time of year as customers are cautious due to global economic uncertainties.

Shares of TI, which makes chips for a wide range of products such as cellphones and industrial equipment, fell 1 percent in extended trade after it said Monday that orders weakened in June and that its backlog for shipments due in September is also lighter than expected.

Cisco to cut about 1,300 jobs

Reuters

Network equipment maker Cisco Systems said on Monday that it plans to cut about 1,300 jobs as part of ongoing efforts to restructure the company.

"We are performing a focused set of limited restructurings that will collectively impact approximately 2 percent of our global employee population," the company said in an emailed statement.

These actions are part of a continuous process to simplify the company and assess the economic environment in certain parts of the world, it said.

Verizon Wireline disappoints, shares off 2.9 percent

Reuters

Weakness in Verizon Communications Inc's enterprise business offset a better-than-expected wireless quarter, sending the telephone company's shares down 2.9 percent.

After pushing Verizon's shares up 14 percent so far this year, investors focused in on the wireline miss on Thursday even as Verizon handily beat Wall Street estimates for wireless subscriber growth and profitability.

While earnings per share (EPS) met Wall Street expectations for the quarter, analyst said that wasn't enough.

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