Thu, Oct 31, 2019 - Page 12 News List

Chunghwa profit down on VOIP, mobile phone use

By Natasha Li  /  Staff reporter

Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), the nation’s largest telecom, yesterday said net profit last quarter fell 4.9 percent to NT$8.09 billion (US$265 million), while revenue declined 3.5 percent to NT$50.85 billion.

Earnings per share (EPS) fell to NT$1.04, from NT$1.1 a year earlier, due to the weaker-than-expected figures, the telecom said.

Due to increased use of voice over Internet protocol (VOIP) and mobile phones, revenue at its international fixed network communications segment plunged 29.8 percent to NT$2.94 billion, while revenue at its domestic segment fell 5.1 percent to NT$15.63 billion, it said.

The decline in the domestic segment, which contributed 30.74 percent to overall revenue last quarter, was softened by a 6 percent annual increase in revenue in the multimedia-on-demand (MOD) business to NT$902 million, it said.

“We counted more than 2.09 million subscribers to our MOD business [last quarter], a 9.4 percent [annual] increase,” chief financial officer Harrison Kuo (郭水義) told an investors’ teleconference, adding that the company’s audiovisual platform is the biggest in the nation.

The firm aims to boost revenue through the broadcast of the Tokyo Olympics next year, he added.

The mobile communications segment, which made the largest revenue contribution at 46.47 percent, saw revenue rise 0.7 percent to NT$23.63 billion due to robust sales of Apple Inc’s iPhone 11 smartphones, the company said.

“The overall performance of iPhone sales [has been] better than that of last year,” Kuo said, adding that the trend will likely continue into this quarter.

“However, prices have been set lower to encourage sales,” he added.

A significant increase in the number of mobile subscribers to a NT$999 monthly bundle plan also contributed to revenue, Kuo said, adding that back-to-school plans rolled out during summer vacation boosted subscriptions.

However, performance in the fourth quarter would fall below guidance, Kuo said, citing strong competition, a decline in broadband customers, and a delay in revenue from its information and communications technology projects for enterprise customers.

The company said EPS this year is forecast to be between NT$4.4 and NT$4.6, compared with NT$4.58 last year.

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