Malaysia's Axiata 3Q Net Profit Declines

By Yantoultra Ngui Features Dow Jones Newswires

Axiata Group Bhd. (6888.KU), Malaysia's largest mobile-phone network operator by market value, said Thursday that its third quarter net profit declined 7.0% on-year, hurt by lower share of results from associates and joint ventures, and losses in India.

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Axiata said the Indian mobile market continues to be negatively impacted by aggressive price competition from new entrants.

Net profit for the July-September period declined to 238.53 million ringgit (US$58 million) from MYR256.56 million a year ago, according to a local stock exchange filing.

Revenue increased 13.6% to MYR6.2 billion in the quarter from MYR5.46 billion on the back of strong growth from Malaysia and Indonesia.

Axiata, which counts Malaysian sovereign-wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd. as a major shareholder, has over 290 million subscribers in countries including Indonesia and Bangladesh.

Regulatory challenges, political risks, intense competition and foreign currency fluctuations are some key risks moving forward.

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Performance in India investment remains uncertain with downside risk due to reduction in interconnect charges, Axiata said in notes accompanying its financial statement.

Axiata's president and group chief executive officer Jamaludin Ibrahim said the company is cautiously optimistic on its fourth quarter performance given the recent surge in competitive activities in Indonesia and Cambodia, but remains very concerned with the Indian market.

Shares of Axiata were unchanged at midday break at MYR5.29 before the earnings release.

-Write to Yantoultra Ngui at yantoultra.ngui@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 23, 2017 00:48 ET (05:48 GMT)