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dtac reports solid EBITDA margin and operating cash flow

     October 18, 2017 – dtac reports solid EBITDA margin at 41% and expanding operating cash flow at THB 4.2 billion in the third quarter 2017. The strong results were attributed to the continual effort to digitize core business to enhance customer digital experience and improve operational efficiency, and lower level of device subsidies as dtac put more focus on non-subsidy acquisition strategy.
     Despite the decline in service revenue excluding IC of 1.5%YoY in the third quarter, full year service revenue growth is on course to meet the guidance. Growth of revenue from data service remained strong and dtac kept on investing heavily in the network in order to accommodate the robust growth of demand for data service. Number of base stations under licensed network rose by 42% YoY in the third quarter. Overall network coverage stood at 94% of total population. In addition, partnership with TOT on 2300MHz wireless business is on track to increase 4G spectrum bandwidth.
     At the end of the third quarter 2017, total subscriber base stood at 23.1 million, with approximately 97% registered under DTN, a subsidiary holding the 2.1GHz license from NBTC.
     EBITDA for the third quarter amounted to THB 7.7 billion, increasing 7%YoY, and EBITDA margin remained high at 41% for 2 consecutive quarters. The increase was mainly driven by lower regulatory costs, handset subsidies, and selling & marketing expenses, as a result of the ongoing implementation of various operational excellence measures.
     Net profit remained under pressure from continuing increase in depreciation and amortization expenses until the end of the concession and in the third quarter amounted to THB 601 million, declining 9%YoY. Furthermore, operating cash flow (EBITDA – CAPEX) continued to expand to THB 4.2 billion, growing strongly from the same period last year.
Based on the results of the first 9 months of 2017, dtac is on track to meet the full year guidance, which remains unchanged. The outlook for 2017 comprises (1) service revenue excluding IC at the same level as last year, (2) EBITDA at least at the same level as last year, and (3) CAPEX in the range of THB 17 – 20 billion.
     Lars Norling, dtac’s Chief Executive Officer, said “We report solid financial results for the third quarter and are happy to see strong EBITDA margin and operating cash flow. The digital transformation of our core business continued to improve customer experience and our operational efficiency. Moreover, densification of the network has been continually carried out to accommodate the consistently strong growth of demand for data service. The partnership with TOT on 2300MHz wireless business will further strengthen our spectrum portfolio. On the back of strong Q3 results, our financial position continues to improve and we are well prepared financially going into the final year of the concession.”