Bloomberg News

Advanced Info 2005 Profit Falls 7%; First Drop in Four Years

February 27, 2006

Advanced Info Service Pcl (ADVANC), sold by the family of Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra last month, reported its first annual profit decline in four years after cutting mobile phone rates as competition increased.

Net income fell 7 percent to 18.9 billion baht ($482 million), or 6.42 baht a share, from 20.3 billion baht, or 6.88 baht a share, a year earlier, the Bangkok-based company said in a statement to the stock exchange. The company was expected to post a profit of 18.8 billion baht, according to the median estimate of eight analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News.

Thaksin's family, which ceded control by selling a 49.6 percent stake in parent Shin Corp., pulled out as Advanced Info cut rates to lure subscribers in a country where half the 65 million population own cell phones. The prime minister has faced calls to quit over the sale, which netted the family a tax-free $1.9 billion.

Sales from call services and handset sales fell 2 percent to 92.5 billion baht, while cost of sales rose 2 percent to 54.2 billion baht. The company didn't report fourth-quarter earnings..

To contact the reporter on this story: Anuchit Nguyen in Bangkok at anguyen@bloomberg.net

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To contact the editor responsible for the story: Bruce Grant in Hong Kong bruceg@bloomberg.net


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