October 21, 2010 / 6:31 AM / 9 years ago

UPDATE 1-Colt earnings up 5 pct, sees strong end to yr

* Core Q3 earnings up 5.4 percent

* Revenues down 1.8 percent due to lower voice sales

* Says on track for improved H2 profitability

(Adds details, quote)

LONDON, Oct 21 (Reuters) - Corporate telecoms specialist Colt COLT.L expects a good end to the year after posting third-quarter core earnings up over 5 percent, slightly ahead of forecasts, due to cost cuts and strong Managed Services sales.

The Luxembourg-based group said the solid earnings for the three months to the end of September came despite revenues being down 1.8 percent to 393 million euros due to lower sales of voice products.

Data revenue was flat whilst the Managed Services continued to grow, albeit at a lower rate. Overall, core earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation were up 5.4 percent to 84 million euros. That compared with a consensus forecast of 80.6 million euros.

“Improvements in revenue mix and changes to provisions in the quarter delivered strong EBITDA margins and we remain on track to deliver improved profitability for the second half of the year,” Chief Executive Rakesh Bhasin said.

The group also said it would take an exceptional charge of around 35 million to 40 million euros to simplify the structure of the business, by dividing into three units of Enterprise, Communication and Data Centre Services.

Reporting by Kate Holton

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