Mauritius Telecom reports rising pre-tax profits

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

Mauritius Telecom (MT) said pre-tax profits rose 17% year-on-year to MUR2.4 billion (USD89.1 million) in 2010, driven by strong growth at its mobile division. MT added that net profits rose 16% from MUR1.4 billion to MUR1.7 billion, and revenue climbed 5.6% from MUR7.1 billion to MUR7.5 billion. The company’s chief executive officer Sarat Lallah said the mobile segment grew by 10.4% in FY2010 compared with 6.7% in FY2009, while the internet segment also grew strongly.

MT, which is 40% owned by France Telecom and is the country’s dominant fixed line and mobile operator, has revealed plans to invest as much as MUR4.3 billion, or 50% of its reserves, in international projects in the short term. It claims to have ‘sufficient reserves’ and that it is in talks with unnamed telecoms providers in Uganda and Vanuatu.

It is also looking to start trading its shares on the Indian Ocean island nation’s bourse, pending approval from the government, Chairman Appalsamy Thomas has said. ‘We are waiting for the decision from the Ministry of Finance,’ he added, ‘Once it’s obtained, it will take us four months before listing.’ Under the plan the government, the State Bank of Mauritius and the National Pension Fund will reduce their stakes in the company through the listing. About 10% to 15% of shares will be traded on the nation’s exchange, CFO Cyprien Mateos said.