Country’s second largest mobile phone operator Robi incurred losses for the fourth consecutive quarter during March-July, 2018 with its year-on-year losses standing at Tk 44.4 crore amid Tk 550 crore fresh investments for 4G network expansion.
The amount, however, would be Tk 57.10 crore considering pre-IFRS report, the quarterly report of Axiata Group, the parent company of Robi, showed.
Under the pre-IFRS statement, the operator in last four quarters incurred Tk 398.3 crore in losses.
The mobile phone operator since 2016 has incurred Tk 890.1 crore in losses after making Tk 840.1 crore in profits in the years of 2014 and 2015.
Compared with that in the second quarter of last year, the company witnessed overall service revenue growth of 6.6 per cent in the second quarter of this year driven by encouraging growth (30 per cent year-on-year) of data revenue against 4.2 per cent voice revenue fall.
At the same time, EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) increased by 56.5 per cent, amounting to Tk 420 crore with a margin of 25.3 per cent.
However, due to continuous investment in nationwide 4G network expansion and capacity enhancement coupled with increased borrowing rate in the market, Robi incurred a loss of Tk 44.4 crore (considering post-IFRS report).
The operator also said that its cost for 4G network expansion and improvement of its 3G/2G network quality raised Robi’s total capital expenditure investment figure to Tk 22,210 crore since the company’s inception in 1997.
At the end of the second quarter of 2018, the investment helped the company to extend its network coverage across the country with 10,894 sites, out of which 6,100 were 4G.
Commenting on the company’s second quarterly report, Robi managing director and chief executive officer Mahtab Uddin Ahmed said, ‘The impact of creating the largest 4.5G network was clearly visible in Q2 of 2018, as it helped us to ramp up our data revenue growth.’
He mentioned that the launch of services like ‘My Sports’ during world cup football and ‘Noor’ during Ramadan were very much in line with Robi’s vision of becoming a digital telecommunication operator.
Robi’s statement also mentioned that the company paid Tk 660 crore in taxes to the government exchequer in 2018.
Since inception in 1997, Robi has paid more than Tk 22,570 crore to the government exchequer while for the same period remitted Tk 290 crore as dividends to its shareholders.
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