Chinese mobile and fixed-line operator China Telecom posted positive interim results for 2017, with net profit increasing 7.4 percent to 12.54 billion yuan ($1.88 billion), compared with a net profit of 11.67 billion the previous year. But the company said it won’t pay an interim dividend this year to allow for funding flexibility.
“Taking into consideration the Company’s profitability, cash flow level and the capital requirements for future development, the Board of Directors has decided not to pay an interim dividend this year in order to maintain adequate funding flexibility,” China Telecom said in a statement.
“The Board of Directors will proactively consider the expectation of shareholders’ return and evaluate the final dividend proposal when reviewing the full year results and will propose to the shareholders’ general meeting accordingly,” the statement added.
The company’s broadband revenue was the top revenue growth driver, increasing 35 percent over the same period last year. Total revenues from the ecosphere of Smart Family, new ICT applications, Internet of Things (IoT), and Internet Finance increased by 23 percent over the same period last year. “New revenue growth engines are being rapidly shaped and formed,” the statement said.
China Telecom’s net increase of mobile subscribers was 14.85 million, reaching a total of 230 million and marketshare increased to 16.8 percent. The net increase of 4G users was 30.15 million, reaching a total of 152 million. Marketshare increased to 17.2 percent while the penetration rate of 4G users increased to 66 percent.
The company’s broadband traffic increased by 126 percent compared to the same period last year while the amount of 4G data being used reached 1.4GB, representing an increase of 56 percent over the same period last year. The net increase of wireline broadband subscribers was 4.98 million, reaching a total of 128 million. In addition, FTTH subscribers increased by 11.24 million, reaching a total of 117 million while the penetration rate reached 92 percent.
China Telecom has “endeavored” to construct three superior networks, it said, namely 4G network, IoT network and all-fiber network with further reinforcement of network edges.
The company’s Chairman Yang pointed out that currently, with the steady improvement of the national economy, the information and telecommunications industry has become the industry with the highest growth potential among the key and fundamental industries of the national economy.
“Technologies penetration promotes industry upgrades. The vast potentials of new emerging businesses such as IoT, cloud computing and Big Data opens up vast market potentials for the Company,” said the statement. “Meanwhile, increasingly intensified industry competition and value chain competition has evolved to competition of the entire ecosphere. Establishment of robust competitive strengths of the ecosphere is the crucial key to success.”