Telcos performing well, Telstra defies the downturn as well

First it was the newly acquired VHA that was defying the economic downturn, then Optus joined the list with economic growth and customer creation, now Telstra has also put its hand up to boast about its exceedingly positive news. Has the telecommunications sector bucked the recession?

According to its latest financial statement, Telstra Australia demonstrated strong results for fiscal 2009 with net profit growth of 10.3 per cent to $4.1 billion, in addition to generating cash flow of $4.4 billion, a 13 per cent increase on the prior year.

Total revenue grew 2.7 per cent to $25,507 million, EBITDA increased 5.1 per cent to $10,948 million, and total operating expenses grew by only 0.6 per cent to $14,669 million – the slowest rate of expense growth in six years.

Telstra’s CEO, David Thodey commended his employees on the strong performance.

“Over the past three months, I have seen firsthand the commitment of all of our employees to offer world-class products and services and I am delighted that their efforts are reflected in the company’s continued strong performance,” he said.

But according to Thodey, the company has had its obstacles along the way.

“As we highlighted at our half year results in February, our business is not immune to the economic slowdown. We continue to experience reduced usage of both fixed line and mobile voice usage, while there is evidence of slowing customer growth in fixed broadband take up,” he said.

“Against the backdrop, I am delighted that our results are in line with our previous guidance, with the 5.3 per cent EBIT growth slightly above the expectations we outlined in February.”

Telstra also witnessed a 10 per cent mobile services growth over the period as well as an increase of 25 per cent for IP access revenue.

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