ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) reported revenue growth of 7%, driven by growth in the Broadband and Enterprise & Wholesale business segments.
The company announced its annual financial results for the year 2021 at its board meeting on February 10, 2022.
Once a fully state-owned company. PTCL was privatized by selling 26% of the shares to Etisalat with management control in 2005 at a price of 2.6 billion dollars.
PTCL Group recorded revenue of Rs 138 billion in 2021, 6.3% more than in 2020. PTML (Ufone) also recorded revenue growth of 4.3% despite fierce competition on the market. While UBank continued its growth momentum and achieved revenue growth of 8.4%. In total, PTCL Group posted a net profit of Rs 2.6 billion.
PTCL (Head quarter)
PTCL continued its growth trajectory in 2021. PTCL’s revenue of Rs 77 billion for the year 2021 increased by 7% compared to 2020, mainly driven by the Broadband and Enterprise and Wholesale business segments.
PTCL recorded the highest fixed broadband net sales and additions in 2021 since 2015, which has enabled PTCL to grow in the commercial broadband segment.
PTCL, the largest player in the fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) market, saw the highest net additions in the FTTH market in 2021, which also earned it the fastest growth.
The company posted an operating profit of Rs 4.2 billion, representing a growth of 21% compared to 2020. While the net profits increased by 14% to Rs 6.9 billion compared to last year .
The company is upgrading its existing infrastructure and network, in addition to expanding FTTH across the country in a bid to monetize the opportunity created by the digital shift of the economy.
In addition, the company recorded a strong performance in the Corporate and Wholesale segments, reflecting a policy to focus on growing the connectivity business.
Consumer business PTCL
In 2021, the company’s fixed broadband business grew 11.7% YoY, while the PTCL IPTV segment also grew 13% YoY. Within the broadband business, PTCL Flash Fiber, the company’s FTTH service, recorded a phenomenal growth of 61.5%, while PTCL CharJi/Wireless Broadband Segment grew by 16.5%.
The voice revenue stream continued to decline due to lower voice traffic and continued customer conversion to Over-The-Top (OTT) services.
The enterprise services segment continued its momentum by maintaining its market leadership in the segments of IP bandwidth, cloud, data centers and other ICT services. PTCL’s Enterprise business grew 10% year over year, while the Carrier and Wholesale business continued its growth momentum and achieved overall revenue growth of 9%. Similarly, growth in international activity was recorded at 4%.
PTML – Ufone
Ufone’s 2021 fiscal year ended on a high note, with revenue up 4.3% over 2020, driven primarily by growth in data services
Ufone acquired an additional 9 MHz 4G spectrum in the 1800 MHz band during the NGMS spectrum auction in September 2021 (an auction in which all other participants declined to participate).
After the spectrum auction, significant network modernization activity was carried out in the fourth quarter of 2021, which enabled Ufone to significantly improve its share of 4G net additions within the industry.
UBank, PTCL’s microfinance and branchless banking subsidiary, continued its growth trajectory and achieved 8.4% revenue growth year-on-year by increasing its advances portfolio. The bank’s balance sheet crossed the Rs 100 billion mark as the bank diversified its funding sources and asset classes while ensuring a positive impact on the bottom line.
Major strategic initiatives undertaken by the bank include the venture into low cost housing loans, international remittances and the launch of Islamic banking.
Despite Ufone’s struggles lately, PTCL has quite a few other businesses. Its core business remains its fixed business, which it has successfully transformed into the backbone of its broadband internet and cable TV business. PTCL also remains an important telecommunications operator from Pakistan to the outside world, with international activity. And its mobile banking unit (UBank) has also grown quite rapidly over the past few years.
PTCL has six businesses. These are, in order of size: Ufone, the broadband Internet and cable television sector, the business and “carrier” sector, fixed-line home, international services and mobile banking. Of these six, three – Ufone, home landlines and international services – have seen their revenues decline steadily since 2017, only for Ufone to recover in 2021 as it focused on mobile broadband.
Of the three lines of business that have seen positive revenue growth, Broadband Internet and Cable TV have been mostly stable businesses, growing at a steady pace over the past 4 years. This leaves two rapidly growing business segments: mobile banking and enterprise and carrier. Mobile banking and carrier business are growing at a similar pace, but importantly, carrier business has been able to nearly match the growth of mobile banking business from a much higher base.