Swisscom saw profits jump on falling sales in the first quarter after it made good on a promise to cut costs.

The operator said in February that it would reduce its cost base by over CHF 300 million by 2020 after net profits fell by a fifth last year.

EBITDA was up 2.9 percent year-on-year in Q1 to CHF 1.1 billion.

This was mainly thanks to lower costs for subscriber acquisition and maintenance, which in turn pushed net income up 3.7 percent to CHF 364 billion.

Revenues fell 0.3 percent to CHF 2.9 billion.

In the operator’s home market, sales from residential customers were down 0.3 percent.

However, Swisscom pointed to the addition of 36,000 new TV connections and 10,000 fixed broadband connections during the quarter.

The number of customers with a bundled package has increased by 207,000 in the past year to 1.5 million, with revenues from such contracts up 13.8 percent.

Sales from SME customers rose 2.8 percent, while those from large businesses fell 0.2 percent.

[Read more: Swisscom bags Swiss Re cloud deal]

Wholesale revenues fell 4.3 percent.

In Italy, meanwhile, sales at Swisscom’s Fastweb subsidiary were up three percent on the back of customer growth.

CEO Urs Schaeppi said: “We are well on track.

“In view of the difficult market conditions, I am satisfied with our business performance.

“We gained many new customers with Swisscom TV, broadband connections and Fastweb.

“Revenue remained more or less stable and EBITDA increased thanks to lower costs.

“The market is becoming increasingly saturated and growth in areas such as mobile telecommunications is becoming more difficult.

“The expansion of the national infrastructure will continue to call for a very high level of investment.”

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