Saudi's Mobily posts 8% rise in Q3 net profit

Telco says revenues in third quarter fell compared to Q2 as iPhone 4 sales slump
Mobily's Q3 profit rose by 8%.
Mobily's Q3 profit rose by 8%.

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Etihad Etisalat, the Saudi Arabian mobile telephone company also known as Mobily, on Tuesday posted an 8% increase in third-quarter profit to SR1.2 billion ($320m).

According to a statement to the Saudi bourse, net profit also rose 5% compared to the previous quarter.

It said net profit for the nine months period amounted to SR3.4bn, a growth of 23%.

Revenues for the third quarter amounted to SR4.6bn, up 16% on the same period in 2010 but down 9% on the previous quarter.

Mobily said the drop in revenues was due to a reduction in sales of low-margin smart phones in the third quarter through its own sales outlets.

In addition, the company's sales of Apple's iPhone 4 declined with the customers anticipation of the new version of the device.

The company said data revenues increased by 7% compared to the second quarter of this year, with the number of mobile broadband subscribers exceeding 6.3 million by the end of the third quarter.

It added that despite the increasing competition in data services and international calls, the rise in net profit was "a result of the improved operational efficiencies".

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