Bloomberg News

Nawras Third-Quarter Profit Rises 8% as Provisions Decline

October 26, 2011

(Updates with comment from CEO in third paragraph.)

Oct. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Omani Qatari Telecommunications Co., known as Nawras, said third-quarter profit rose 8 percent as the company reduced provisions and added fixed-line subscribers.

The phone company, a unit of Qatar Telecom QSC, said it reduced provisions by 1.2 million rials, boosting earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization 8 percent to 27.5 million rials. Net income climbed to 13.5 million rials ($35 million) from 12.5 million rials a year earlier, the company said in a statement to the Muscat bourse today. Revenue gained 3 percent to 49.2 million rials.

“The market for our customers remains highly competitive and we continue to fully implement the marketing and cost efficiency initiatives we commenced in the first half of the year,” Chief Executive Officer Ross Cormack said in the statement.

The roll-out of fixed-line services more than doubled the number of home and business broadband customers and the company is increasing its mobile subscriber numbers, he said.

The operator will run trials over the next six months on a mobile broadband technology that allows for faster data transmission, better voice quality and new mobile phone applications, said Cormack today in a telephone interview.

Nawras is still in talks with its bank lenders on a possible refinancing of a 66 million rial credit facility, Chief Financial Officer Jorgen Latte said today. He declined to give a timeframe.

The stock rose 0.2 percent to close at 0.618 rial on the Muscat bourse before the results were announced.

--Editors: James Kraus, Tim Farrand

To contact the reporter on this story: Tamara Walid in Abu Dhabi at twalid@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Inal Ersan at iersan@bloomberg.net


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