Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

European mobile holding company Millicom International Cellular saw its second quarter profit leap sevenfold to US$34mn from US$5mn in the same period a year ago, the company said in a statement.

A major contributor to the result was a US$59.5mn fair value gain on financial instruments with this component valued at only US$8.4mn in 2Q05. Global revenue for the quarter rose 39% to US$362mn from US$261mn a year ago, mainly due to strong growth in Central and South America and Africa.

"The primary drivers of this growth have been the 78% increase in revenues in Central America, 54% increase in South America and 52% increase in Africa," Millicom CEO Marc Beuls said.

The company now has 10.9 million subscribers, up 51% compared to the second quarter of 2005. Central and South America now account for 49% of the global client base, with 3.65 million and 1.7 million subscribers, respectively. Latin America represented 43% of Millicom's global client base a year ago.

Ebitda for the second quarter was US$157mn, up 28% compared to US$122mn in 2Q05. "Millicom is today reaping the benefits of past investment in its networks and distribution in Latin America and the successful roll out of the Tigo brand in these markets. We believe that our current investment programme will enable us to replicate this successful model in other markets," Beuls said.

For the six months ended June 30, 2006, the company's profit was US$67mn, compared to a loss of US$6mn in the same period last year. Revenues were US$684mn, up 29% on 1H05. The group's operating units in the region are Telemóvil in El Salvador, Telecel Paraguay, Telecel Bolivia, Comcel in Guatemala and Celtel in Honduras.