2020-05-29 08:24:19 BdST

Robi makes profit in 1st quarter of 2020

Tan Sri Ghazzali Sheikh Abdul Khalid, chairman of Axiata

Robi Axiata, the second largest telecom company of the country, has made a significant profit from January to March 2020, which is the first quarter of their current financial year.

In this period, the mobile phone service provider made a profit of Tk17.98 crore, compared to a loss of Tk23.36 crore during the same period in 2019.

The Malaysia-based Axiata group recently published its unaudited financial report for the first quarter, along with the financial performance of Robi.

In a media release, Axiata group said that revenues of Robi grew by 7.3 percent to Tk1,865.72 crore, driven mainly by data subscription growth.

Tan Sri Ghazzali Sheikh Abdul Khalid, chairman of Axiata, said, "As the pandemic hit our markets, the board applauds how the group placed aside commercial interests to take immediate, extensive and coordinated action to meet the multifaceted needs of customers and communities.

"Robi also experienced yet another excellent quarter with expansion recorded across all key metrics, boosted by data upsurge and lower network related cost, and therefore, is now back to black."

Tan Sri Jamal added that Axiata will continue to invest mainly in the 4G mobile network and enterprise solutions now more than ever, as economies everywhere attempt "herculean efforts" to bounce back in the new normal.

"We brace for tough business in the short-term in choosing to respond responsibly to society's needs even as it eats into our revenue. We are also aware it will get even tougher in the mid-term when livelihoods are further impacted as some sectors falter and fail, leading to salary cuts and job losses," he added.

But in the long-term, as the whole economy recovers with some sectors fully recovered, more jobs will return, and people will get back into employment with possible shapes of new businesses starting to emerge, Jamal said.

"Bandwidth will become as critical as utilities, heightened demand will build up for solutions, tools, platforms and applications. From individuals to organisations, they are now firm believers in and adopters of digitisation with customers themselves already 'digitally accelerated.'"

Jamal said he believes the telco industry will rise as one of the biggest winners in this new world. "It would also be the engine of growth for the global economy."

Axiata owns 68.69 percent shares of Robi. The telecom service provider has a paid-up capital of Tk4,700 crore.

Robi is going to issue shares of Tk523.79 crore at face value of Tk10 each in the stock market.

Of that, it has already issued shares worth Tk136 crore at the same rate to their employees under an employee share purchase plan (ESPP), while the remaining shares will be offered to the public.

Robi applied to the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) to consider the issuance in ESPP as a part of the IPO in order to make the total stocks floated 10 percent of the post-IPO number of shares.

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