China Unicom profit plunges 94% in 2016

Friday 17 March 2017 | 09:58 CET | News

China Unicom posted service revenue of CNY 240.98 billion in 2016, up 2.4 percent year-on-year. EBITDA amounted to CNY 79.50 billion, down 9.1 percent year-on-year and accounting for 33 percent of service revenue. Profit reached CNY 0.63 billion, down 94.1 percent year-on-year, which, however, showed substantial improvement compared to the loss attributable to equity shareholders of the company (excluding the gain on disposal of tower assets) of CNY 3.36 billion in the second half of 2015. Capital expenditure decreased to CNY 72.11 billion in 2016, down by 46.1 percent from 2015.

Mobile service revenue reached CNY 145.02 billion, up 1.7 percent year-on-year. The company saw a net addition of 11.51 million mobile billing customers, reaching a total of 263.82 million mobile billing subscribers at 31 December 2016. ARPU of mobile billing subscribers remained stable with a slight increase to CNY 46.4.

In 2016, the number of 4G subscribers saw a net increase of 60.40 million to a total of 104.55 million. The proportion of 4G subscribers to mobile billing subscribers increased by 22.1 percentage points year-on-year to 39.6 percent. Monthly average DOU per 4G subscriber reached 1,521MB.

China Unicom’s fixed-line service revenue reached CNY 94.66 billion, up 3.7 percent year-on-year, of which the proportion of fixed-line voice revenue dropped to 14 percent. China Unicom’s fixed-line broadband access revenue hit CNY 43.87 billion, maintaining steady performance year-on-year. Fixed-line broadband subscribers jumped by 4 percent year-on-year to 75.24 million, of which 71.2 percent were FTTH subscribers. ‘Smart WO Family’ subscribers accounted for 26.1 percent of the fixed-line broadband subscribers, up 12.8 percentage points year-on-year.

In 2016, the company’s IDC and cloud computing revenue reached CNY 9.45 billion, up 33.7 percent year-on-year. ICT revenue reached CNY 5.94 billion, up 37 percent year-on-year. IPTV revenue hit CNY 1.41 billion, up 68.1 percent year-on-year.

China Unicom reported a net increase of 337,000 4G base stations in 2016 to a total of 736,000 at end-December. Taking into consideration the company’s profitability, debt, cash flow level and capital requirements for its future development, China Unicom’s board has resolved not to pay a dividend for the year 2016. The company says it will strive to enhance its profits while paving the way for paying a dividend for 2017.

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