Phone company losses widen
Vodafone Qatar has recorded a loss of QR466m ($128m) for the financial year ending 31 March 2016, a 116 per cent widening of its QR216m loss in 2014/15.
It attributed the loss to structural changes in the telecommunications industry, as customers use voice over internet rather than international calls, and high competition.
In response, Vodafone is reducing its Qatar workforce by 10 per cent and writing off non-performing assets. Vodafone Qatars employment expenses in 2015/16 reached QR221m.
The companys revenues fell by 8 per cent in 2015/16 to QR2.1bn, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) fell 29 per cent to QR401m.
Vodafone Qatar increased postpaid revenues by 18 per cent, and its number of users rose 7 per cent to 1,548,000 mobile customers. High competition from local Ooredoo in prepaid reduced Vodafones mobile average revenue per user (ARPU) by 13 per cent to QR107.
Vodafone Qatar has spent over QR1bn over the last two years on a network modernisation programme.