On The Money - In Brief

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

-    Telecom Egypt (TE) has posted an 80% rise in net profit for 2005, up to EGP1.8 billion (USD313 million), as an improvement in the Egyptian economy helped push up the company’s results. Revenues in the twelve months ended 31 December 2005 reached EGP8.4 billion, an increase of 8% on 2004, pushing EBITDA up EGP300 million to EGP4.7 billion. ‘The buoyant Egyptian economy has contributed positively to consumer spending, service penetration levels in both voice telephony and internet and increased levels of service usage,’ TE Chairman Akil Beshir said in a statement. TE, which was partly privatised last year, is facing a busy 2006 following full liberalisation of the fixed line market at the turn of the year and has also said it is considering bidding for Egypt's third mobile phone licence; it currently holds a 25.5% stake in cellco Vodafone Egypt, having upped its original 8.6% holding in 2005. TE ended 2005 with 10.4 million fixed line users, up 10% year-on-year. TE Data, its data and internet subsidiary, said it had established a 30% retail ADSL market share, having trebled its ADSL subscriber base to 27,343 by the end of 2005. TE Data revenues for the full year 2005 grew 53% to EGP121.6 million.