Wataniya Telecom's profit dips in Q2

Increased competition in Kuwait erodes Wataniya's profits
Wataniya felt the effects of increased competition in its home market of Kuwait in Q2.
Wataniya felt the effects of increased competition in its home market of Kuwait in Q2.

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Wataniya Telecom, which is majority owned by Qatar’s Qtel group, experienced a steep fall in second quarter and half-year net profit.

The telco, which has its main operation in Kuwait, posted a profit 19.1 million dinars ($68 million) in Q2, down 48.9% on 37.4 million dinars ($133.1 million) in the same period in 2011, according to AFP.

Net profit in the first six months of the year declined 85.3% to 47.4 million dinars ($168.7 million) from 322.5 million dinars ($1.15 billion) in 2011.

2011’s first-half figure included $945 million as a one-off fair value gain due to revaluation of the assets of its Tunisian unit, the company said.

Excluding that, net profit for the first half of 2012 was still 16.8% lower, according to AFP.

Wataniya said its earnings had been hit by changes in the operating environment in Kuwait, including increasing competition, and foreign exchange movement in Algeria.

Wataniya operates in Kuwait, Algeria, the Maldives, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and the Palestinian territories. It has some 18.3 million subscribers, up from 16.9 million a year ago.

Wataniya competes with Zain and Viva in Kuwait.

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