Thu, 04 May 2000

Indosat reports earnings of Rp 433b

JAKARTA (JP): Publicly listed international telephone operator PT Indosat reported on Wednesday consolidated net income of Rp 433.8 billion (US$54.2 million) for the first quarter of this year.

The company said that the figure represented a 16 percent increase over the corresponding period in 1999.

Indosat's newly appointed president Hari Kartana said its core business of international direct dial (IDD) service had only recorded a paltry increase of 0.3 percent in the total call traffic compared to the corresponding period last year.

"The country's real economic sector did not move towards conditions conducive to boosting IDD traffic during the period" he said.

Indosat's international telephone traffic in the first quarter 2000 was 159.6 million minutes, up 0.3 percent from 159.1 million minutes in the corresponding period of 1999.

Its international telephone market share as of end of March 31, 2000 was around 87.1 percent with the fixed line market share stable at around 91.5 percent and mobile phone users market share at 78.0 percent.

The company's international telephone service revenues during the first quarter increased by 0.4 percent, almost in line with the traffic volume growth of 0.3 percent.

Its consolidated operating revenues declined by 1.1 percent from Rp 683.7 billion in the first quarter 1999 to Rp 676.1 billion in the first quarter this year.

The company said the decline was partly due to the unexpected negative growth of 8.2 percent recorded by its other telecommunications services, such as international telex, telegraph revenues and Global Corporate Service.

It said its net other income grew by 102.3 percent due mainly to an increase in gain on foreign exchange and investment income.

Gain on foreign exchange grew by 279.7 percent from Rp 22.4 billion in first quarter 1999 to Rp 85.1 billion in first quarter 2000.

Investment income posted a significant growth of 104.4 percent to reach Rp 74.3 billion.

Indosat's director of corporate development Budi Prasetyo said the company was preparing to shift its business focus to a full network service provider with emphasize on the information technology business.

"We expect that by the time the new telecommunications law goes into effect in September, Indosat can move quickly to become a full network and service provider and a one stop shopping center for IT business", he said.

Indosat and its subsidiary PT Satelindo currently hold the exclusive rights to provide international telecommunications service until 2004.

The company's shares are listed on the Jakarta and Surabaya Stock Exchanges and its American Depository Shares (ADS) are listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Earnings per share over the period were Rp 418.9 or US$ 0.6 per ADS using the closing exchange rate of Rp 7,600 per U.S. dollar quoted by Bank Indonesia on March 31, 2000.

The company said it will pay the first term dividend of Rp 333 per share from a total of Rp 666 per share on June 9. The remaining Rp 333 per share will be paid on Nov. 1, 2000. (cst)