DUBAI May 27 Vodafone Qatar, an affiliate of Vodafone Group, reported a narrowing fourth-quarter loss on Tuesday as the telecom operator increased its customer base by more than a fifth.
Vodafone, which ended Ooredoo's domestic monopoly in 2009, made a net loss of 32.7 million riyals ($9 million) in the three months to March 31, according to Reuters calculations. That compares with a loss of 73.6 million riyals in the prior-year period. The operator's financial year starts on April 1.
Two analysts polled by Reuters forecast Vodafone Qatar would make a quarterly loss of 28.2 million and 49.8 million riyals respectively.
The company said it would pay a dividend of 0.17 riyals per share.
Vodafone made an annual loss of 246 million riyals in the 12 months to March 31. This compares with a loss of 400.7 million riyals a year earlier.
Quarterly revenue was 550 million riyals, up from 435.2 million riyals a year ago.
Vodafone Qatar - 23 percent owned by parent Vodafone - had 1.33 million mobile customers as of March 31, up 22 percent from a year earlier. ($1 = 3.6410 Qatar Riyals) (Reporting by Matt Smith; Editing by David French)