TeliaSonera has posted a rise in net profits for both the fourth quarter of 2012 and last year as a whole, but at a price.

In the closing quarter of the year, net profits increased by 35 percent to reach €800 million, although revenues fell slightly by 0.7 percent, to hit €3.1 billion.

Profits were helped by the sale of shares in Russian mobile phone operator Megafon, which began trading as a public company in November.

Over the whole of 2012, revenues remained flat at €12.2 billion, but profits increased by 8.1 percent to €2.3 billion.

The Scandinavian operator's mobility services division saw sales fall 1.5 percent to €1.5 million in Q4, while in broadband services sales decreased by 4.1 percent to €1 million.

There was better news in the operator's Eurasia business unit, where sales increased by 10.9 percent to €603 million.

The same pattern was repeated over 2012 as a whole.

Mobility services saw sales decrease by 1.8 percent to €5.8 billion, while sales in broadband services fell 2.6 percent to €4.1 billion.

Eurasian revenues increased 13.9 percent to €2.3 billion with Nepal the best performer - sales there were up over 38 percent during 2012.

Commenting on the results, president and CEO Lars Nyberg said that in order to maintain profitability the company had to"fundamentally change our business and simplify our way of working".

He added: "We have already started implementing measures that will lead to a cost reduction of €232 million net over the coming two years, including personnel reductions net of 2,000 employees as announced in October.

"In the fourth quarter, 300 jobs in Sweden and Finland were ef- fected by these measures. During 2013, 1,800 employees in the Nordics and Baltics will be affected and the total cost for these reductions is estimated to €197 million."

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