First quarter results at eir 'in line with expectations' despite underlying revenue being down

Telecommunications company eir has announced its first quarter results to September 30, writes Cillian Sherlock.

Underlying revenue of €322m, was down €7m or 2% year-on-year.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of €125m, was up €3m or 2% year-on-year.

Operating costs were reduced by €5m or 4% year-on-year.

Chief Financial Officer Huib Costermans said the results are "in line" with the company's expectations.

"Underlying revenue of €322 million for the quarter was down by 2% year on year, mainly due to a strategic decision to exit low margin business lines within the eir business division," he said.

Mr Costermans said the €11m (3.5%) drop on reported revenue compared to the prior year period was mainly due to mobile termination rate (“MTR”) reductions implemented on September of last year, and a "strategic decision to exit low margin business lines in the eir business divisions."

It highlighted business updates including the submission of their solution for the National Broadband Plan tender.

In addition, it said 1.7 million premises were passed with fibre technology.

The company reported a 34% take-up of high speed broadband which was delivered to over 100,000 premises of the 300,000 rural commitment contract.

eir also reported 574.000 fibre broadband connections or 64% of the total broadband base.

It said 26% of its customers were now on triple or quad play bundles.

“We have started the year with good momentum, and the group continues to deliver solid results with EBITDA growth of 2% compared to the prior year," said CEO Richard Moat.

"We remain focused on our strategic objective of providing high speed broadband to over 80% of homes and businesses throughout Ireland by December 2018," he added.

Mr Moat said the company's 4G mobile network reaches 96% of the population while the company reported a "stable mobile base with improving mix of customers".

49% of the companys total 1,057,000 customers are on postpay contracts (up 2%) while 22% of households have mobile included in their bundle (up 3%).

It also reported a 4% year-on-year increase on broadband connections, up 36,000 to 903,000.

It said eir Vision had 16,000 more customers than last year, reaching 74,000.

The same service had a 31% take-up by the consumer fibre base.

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