ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Axiata up 9.5 percent
Axiata saw improved performances from almost all its operating companies particularly from Celcom Axiata, its domestic unit, PT XL Axiata Tbk in Indonesia, Dialog in Sri Lanka, and Robi in Bangladesh.
Axiata’s net profit rose to RM576.8 million for the April-June period, versus RM526.8 million a year ago.
Celcom, the Malaysian arm of Axiata, saw year-on-year profit growth of 30 per cent to RM476 million. The company’s mobile broadband business also picked up, contributing nine per cent to revenue from five per cent a year ago.
Earlier this month, PT XL Axiata, it’s Indonesian unit, reported first-half net profit of 1.324 trillion rupiah, up 87 per cent from 706.4 billion rupiah in 2009.
The company said its operations in the sub-continent continued to consolidate and improve, although difficult market conditions weighed down the performance of Idea Cellular, a 20 per cent-owned associate.
Last month, competitor DiGi.Com Bhd posted a 18.7 per cent rise in second quarter profits. Maxis Bhd is not expected to announce its results until next week.
Axiata also it intends to pay dividends of at least 30 per cent of its consolidated profits and endeavours to progressively increase the payout ratio over a period of time.
Sixteen out of 22 analysts tracked by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S have a “buy” or “strong buy” rating on Axiata, with four calling it a “hold” and two rating it an “underperform.”
Axiata’s shares have risen 48 per cent this year, making it the best performing telecommunications counter and one of the best performing stocks on Bursa Malaysia. Rivals DiGi.Com and Maxis have risen 12.7 per cent and 0.7 per cent respectively. The benchmark KLCI index has risen 10.5 per cent year to date.
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