dtac returns to year-on-year growth due to network improvements

October 16 2019Total Access Communication PLC. or dtac reported strong performance in Q319 with year-on-year growth in quarterly service revenues (excluding interconnect fees, or IC). The turnaround was attributed to network improvements and continuous customer focus.

Alexandra Reich, Chief Executive Officer, Total Access Communication PLC. said “The results this quarter mark an important milestone for dtac and are a testament to our focus on never-stop improving. We see that both post- and prepaid customers are responding well to our network improvements as well as our efforts to create a more personalized user experience. Our strategic focus remains on delivering a consistent network experience nationwide and delighting customers by understanding and delivering on their needs.”

Throughout the year, dtac has worked consistently to improve the quality and footprint of its mobile network, doubling its rate of cell sites expansion. During Q3’19, the number of 2300MHz base stations reached 16,400, many of which operate on 4G TDD Massive MIMO 64T64R, a technology dtac was the first to deploy in Thailand. dtac also continued on the journey towards 5G by launching a test-bed at its offices in Chamchuri Square and upgrading its virtual core network.

At the end of Q319, total subscriber base stood at 20.4 million with a subscriber loss of 217,000. Service revenues excluding IC for Q3’19 increased 2.3% QoQ and 0.6% YoY, driven by continued improvement in prepaid and sustaining momentum in postpaid segment. Net profit for Q319 amounted to THB 1.8 billion, increasing 6.2% QoQ due to better EBITDA performance.

Dilip Pal, Chief Financial Officer said “We had strong financials with year-on-year growth in service revenues excluding IC. With well controlled cost of services and SG&A expenses, we managed to get sequential EBITDA and net profit improvement.”

dtac keeps its guidance on service revenue excluding IC development for the year at a low single-digit decline with EBITDA in the range of THB 24 – 25 billion and capital expenditure of THB 13 – 15 billion.

Key financial indicators in Q319 (Pre-TFRS 15)

  • Service revenue excluding IC – THB 15.8 billion, growing 2.3% QoQ and 0.6% YoY
  • EBITDA – THB 6.8 billion, growing 2.9% QoQ
  • EBITDA margin (normalized) – 37.9%, improvement of 0.8 ppt QoQ.

Net profit – THB 1.8 billion, growing 6.2% QoQ