PARIS, March 19 France's upstart telecom
operator Iliad saw a drop in its net profit last year
because of the ongoing cost of building its new mobile network,
but said it would propose a stable dividend of 0.37 euros per
Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and
amortisation (EBITDA) rose 10.6 percent to 921.4 million euros
as the new mobile service drew additional customers to the
traditional broadband and fixed business.
Analysts were expecting EBITDA of 827.77 million and net
income of 164.12 million euros, according to Thomson Reuters
Iliad, which markets its services under the brand name Free
in France, also said it would aim for growth in revenue from
fixed services of more than 5 percent this year.
Earlier Iliad posted an increase of nearly 50 percent in
full-year sales to 3.15 billion euros, and said it had captured
some 8 percent mobile market share after gaining 5.2 million
customers last year.
Since it launched in January 2012, Iliad's Free Mobile
service has touched off a price war and forced larger
competitors France Telecom, Vivendi's SFR, and
Bouygues Telecom to cut costs to compete.
(Reporting by Leila Abboud; Editing by Christian Plumb)