Singapore, 4 February 2010 – The final quarter of 2009 saw operating revenue at S$550 million and for the full year at S$2.15 billion. The Group’s EBITDA for the quarter was S$152 million or 8% lower year-on-year (YoY) but 1% higher at S$654 million for the full year. EBITDA margin as a percentage of service revenue was at 29.2% for the quarter and 31.8% for the full year.
For the quarter, profit from operations at S$89 million was 15% lower YoY but remained stable for the full year at S$408 million. Net profit after tax decreased 15% for the quarter but increased 3% for the full year recording S$74 million and S$320 million respectively. Free cash flow (FCF) at S$82 million for the quarter was about the same as last year. Looking at the full year, FCF at S$461 million was 22% higher than last year’s S$378 million.
Capital expenditure (capex) was 4% higher at S$57 million compared to S$55 million a year ago. For the full year, capex at S$231 million represented 11% of the Group’s operating revenue.
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FY-2009 Financial & Business Highlights
On a full year basis, Fixed Networks revenue registered the highest growth at 6%. Mobile remained the major revenue contributor at 51%. Pay TV, Broadband, Fixed Network Services and Sales of Equipment contributed 19%, 11%, 15% and 4% respectively to the mix.
“Considering the competitive landscape and slow economy, we have delivered a stable FY2009 result, with all our lines of business performing as expected,” said Mr Neil Montefiore, CEO of StarHub. “For 2010, Hubbing continues to be our main strategy; delivering a comprehensive range of branded quality content and innovative services across our multi-service platforms to delight our customers.”
“In addition, we expect to ramp up our activities in broadband and fixed line services in order to leverage on the upcoming launch of the Next-Generation Nationwide Broadband Network," added Mr Montefiore. “For our shareholders, we expect to maintain our minimum quarterly dividend of 5.0 cents per share for the whole year."
Outlook for FY2010
Based on the current outlook, we expect the Group’s 2010 operating revenue growth to be in the low single-digit range, and EBITDA margin on service revenue is expected to be around 30%. The 2010 cash capex, as a percentage of operating revenue, is expected to increase but not exceed 14%. The increase in capex, driven by the new IT business support systems and the roll out capex of Nucleus Connect, will result in 2010 depreciation being higher at around 13% of operating revenue. We intend to pay a minimum cash dividend of 5.0 cents per ordinary share per quarter, totalling 20.0 cents for FY2010.
For more details on the Group's performance for FY2009 and outlook for FY2010, please visit www.starhub.com/ir. Materials available at this website include the audio conference and webcast links, investor presentation and audited results for the full year ended 31 December 2009.
“Some of the statements in this news release constitute ‘forward-looking statements’ that do not directly or exclusively relate to historical facts. These forward-looking statements reflect StarHub Ltd’s current intentions, plans, expectations, assumptions and beliefs about future events and are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside StarHub Ltd’s control. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements include known and unknown risks. Because actual results could differ materially from StarHub Ltd’s current intentions, plans, expectations, assumptions and beliefs about the future, you are urged to view all forward-looking statements contained in this news release with caution."