Rising handset subsidies led to a 2% year-on-year fall in profit at China Unicom (Beijing, China) for the second quarter of the year.
China’s second-biggest mobile operator reported net profit of 2.42 billion yuan ($381 million) as it increased spending on smartphones in a bid to lure more Chinese consumers on to its 3G networks.
Even so, the results were slightly better than expected, based on a poll of six analysts conducted by Reuters, due to a drop in depreciation expenses.
Telecom New Zealand has reported huge gains in profitability thanks to one-off adjustments related to the demerger of its infrastructure business in December last year.
New Zealand’s incumbent operator reported net profit of NZ$1.2 billion ($973 million) for 2012, compared with just NZ$166 million last year, several months after agreeing to spin off Chorus.
The company agreed to the separation under pressure from the New Zealand government, but Chorus was subsequently awarded the bulk of contracts to build a new fibre-optic broadband network across the country.
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China Telecom has announced plans to buy 3G infrastructure from China Telecommunications Corporation, its state-run parent, while reporting an 8.3% fall in net profit for the first half of the year, to 8.8 billion yuan ($1.4 billion), compared with the same period in 2011.
The operator, which competes against bigger rivals China Mobile and China Unicom in the mobile-phone market, says it will spend approximately 84.6 billion yuan on CDMA infrastructure currently owned by China Telecommunications Corporation.
China's ZTE Corp, the world's fourth-biggest mobile vendor and fifth-ranked telecoms gear maker, reported first-half net profit slid by more than two thirds.
January-June net profit dropped to 244.88 million yuan ($38.5 million) from 769 million yuan a year earlier, but beat a forecast of 223.6 million yuan, according to seven analysts polled by Reuters.
Based on Reuters calculations, second-quarter profit slumped to 94.01 million yuan, compared to a forecast of 72.7 million yuan.
VimpelCom has reported a surge in its quarterly profit despite unfavourable currency movements, continued conflict between its shareholders and a run-in with the Algerian government.
Facing challenges on numerous fronts, the huge Russian operator managed to increase second-quarter net income by 83% compared with the same period last year, to $488 million, thanks to cost reductions and the growth of some emerging-market operations.
Competition from over-the-top services and the deficiencies of its own third-generation (3G) mobile-phone technology are costing China Mobile dearly.
The biggest mobile-phone operator in China reported disappointing growth in net profit for the first half of the year of just 1.5%, to 62.2 billion yuan ($9.77 billion), compared with the same period of 2011.
As China’s vast market becomes flooded with handsets, revenues rose just 6.6% to 266.53 billion yuan, a much weaker rate of growth than in previous years.
Qatar’s Qtel has made a $2.2 billion offer for the 47.5% share of Kuwait’s Wataniya it does not already own.
The operator says it has already won the approval of Kuwait’s Capital Markets Authority for the deal.
The announcement comes just two months after Qtel doubled its stake in Iraq’s Asiacell to 60% for $1.47 billion.
Backed by the cash-rich Qatari state, Qtel is increasing its holdings in fast-growing businesses at a time when other big telecoms operators would struggle to fund deals.