Tele2 announced a “robust” performance in Q3, despite hefty one-off payments causing a profits slide.
The Sweden-based operator saw revenues grow five percent year-on-year to €1.27 billion, driven by continuing growth in Norway and particularly Kazakhstan, which remained its “outperformer”.
Tele2 Kazakhstan added 589,000 new customers during the quarter, which equated to sales growth of 129 percent, and acquired its three millionth subscriber in September.
Customer intake saw the operator’s Russian subsidiary described in similarly positive terms as its “most significant growth engine”.
Tele2 Russia recorded a sales increase of 14 percent, to €379.9 million. It now accounts for 30 percent of the operator’s net sales.
However, group profit tumbled 22 percent to €114.3 million as the company registered a couple of one-off payments, including an impairment loss of €29.2 million related to its struggling Croatian business and damages of €33.6 million following a lost court case on a stock option deal in Sweden.
The operator’s outlook, however, was positive.
CEO Mats Granryd commented: “Tele2 has continued to show robust performance in customer intake, revenue and EBITDA during the third quarter of 2012.”
He reiterated Tele2’s readiness for a ‘data centric’ future, saying, “We can see even more pronounced shifts from voice to data demand, as well as ‘acceleration of everything’.
“Mobile data volumes, for example, are growing 3 times faster than fixed broadband data.”
The operator pointed to these trends and growth assets – such as its network expansion investments across Sweden, Norway, Russia, and Kazakhstan – as indicators of stronger, sustainable earnings growth in the longer term.