Telkom's mobile business growth still plugging the decline in fixed-voice income

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Growth in Telkom's mobile business continues to plug the decline in its fixed-voice revenue, in what has been a common shift in user trends across telecommunication companies in the country.

The company's annual financial results, released on Monday, showed that its mobile business was the main contributor to group revenue growth with service revenue growing by 34.5% to R16.9 billion and profit stood at R2.4 billion.

According to the mobile network provider, which is partly owned by the state, mobile business growth was sufficient to offset the fixed voice revenue decline and revenue Covid-19 pressures during the full financial year to end of March.

"The results showed a change in revenue mix, with legacy fixed-voice income now contributing only 15% to the business," the company said in a statement.

Headline earning per share ticked up 53.4% to R56.15 per share and basic earnings per share also accelerated by 89.6% to R52.91 due to an 80% increase in profit before tax.

CEO Sipho Maseko said Telkom had over the past five years been investing in new revenue streams to evolve its business from a legacy to next-generation business - and next-generation revenue now contributes more than 65% to group revenue.

"We have also reached the inflection point where the profitability of the new revenue streams exceed legacy," he said.

"Our mobile business continued its growth trajectory as we surpassed 15 million subscribers during the year, carrying even more data traffic in 4G... as well as commencing our 5G rollout."

While the mobile business showed growth, Telkom's information technology subsidiary, BCX, which it acquired in 2015 suffered a decline in revenue as a result of the national lockdown and the work from home response which impacted fixed-voice revenue from enterprise customers.

Information Technology revenue also came under pressure as corporates deferred capital expenditure and delayed projects given the increased levels of uncertainty.

Yep!, which focuses on small and medium businesses, was negatively affected by the responses to Covid-19, which included a national lockdown, retrenchments, salary increase suspensions and small business closures.

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