November 8, 2018 / 9:06 AM / in 8 days

UPDATE 1-OTE Telecom Q3 core profit grows as Greece recovers

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ATHENS, Nov 8 (Reuters) - Greece’s biggest telecoms operator OTE posted on Thursday a 4.7 percent rise in third-quarter core profit thanks to a growing retail fixed and mobile business in its home market.

The former national monopoly, which is 45 percent owned and managed by Germany’s Deutsche Telekom, reported earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of 365.2 million euros ($417.39 million) compared to 348.7 million euros in the same quarter a year earlier.

Greece accounts for about 90 percent of OTE’s EBITDA and its profit margin rose by 150 basis points to 42.5 percent. Heavy spending on new high-speed VDSL broadband services and a fast growing pay-TV business have helped the group win back fixed-line customers.

Broadband subscribers in Greece rose 8.2 percent year-on-year in the third quarter to around 1.86 million, while TV subscribers came in at 534,093, up 3.3 percent.

OTE said positive trends in the first nine months were expected to continue in the fourth quarter as recovery in Greece is boosting its fixed and mobile business.

Overall sales were flat in July-to-September at 991.5 million euros, with increased revenues in Greece offset by weakness in Romania where bad debt provisioning could rise in the coming quarters. (Reporting by Angeliki Koutantou; Editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

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