Canada's Telus misses profit estimates as costs rise

Darren Entwistle, President and Chief Executive Officer of Canadian telecoms company Telus Corp speaks to shareholders during the company's annual general meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia May 5, 2010. Telus Corp has the ability to post annual earnings growth in excess of 10 percent over the next three years, and even stronger free cash, Entwistle said on Wednesday. REUTERS/Lyle Stafford (CANADA - Tags: BUSINESS)

(Reuters) - Canadian telecom provider Telus Corp’s profit missed analysts’ forecasts in the fourth quarter, hurt by higher spending.

Telus said on Thursday its costs of goods and services purchased rose 5.3 percent in the quarter ended Dec. 31, while depreciation expenses rose 2 percent. The higher costs reflected “significant” investments in broadband networks as well as acquisitions, Telus said.

Telus has been spending heavily to attract more wireless subscribers amid fierce competition from BCE Inc, Shaw Communications and Rogers Communication.

Telus added 121,000 wireless postpaid customers, about 34,000 more than a year ago.

The company said its postpaid churn — the amount of defecting customers — rose to 0.99 percent from 0.98 percent in the year-earlier quarter, still among the industry’s lowest rates.

Telus’s net income rose to C$282 million ($224 million) from C$87 million a year earlier. Excluding one-time items, Telus earned 55 Canadian cents per share, missing analysts’ average estimate of 57 Canadian cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Operating revenue rose to C$3.48 billion from C$3.31 billion.

($1 = 1.2592 Canadian dollars)

Reporting by Nishara Karuvalli Pathikkal; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar