August 10, 2017 / 11:56 PM / 4 months ago

Singtel posts 5.6 pct drop in Q1 profit

SINGAPORE, Aug 11 (Reuters) - Singapore Telecommunications Ltd on Friday reported a 5.6 percent drop in first-quarter net profit, hurt by exceptional items and lower contributions from India’s Bharti Airtel Ltd, one of its regional associates.

Southeast Asia’s largest telecom operator posted a net profit of S$892 million ($654 million) for the three months ended June, including one-off charges from workforce restructuring at its Australian subsidiary Optus, compared with S$944 million a year ago.

Underlying net profit, which excludes one-time items, fell 3.5 percent.

Singtel said pre-tax profit contribution from Airtel, India’s top telecoms operator, dropped 42 percent due to fierce competition.

Singtel said it maintained its outlook provided in May. The company had forecast consolidated revenue to grow by mid-single digits and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) by low single digits for the full year ending March 2018.

In July, Singtel listed its broadband unit NetLink NBN Trust in a $1.7 billion initial public offering, reducing its stake in the subsidiary to 24.99 percent. ($1 = 1.3636 Singapore dollars) (Reporting by Aradhana Aravindan; Editing by Himani Sarkar and Stephen Coates)

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