Three’s revenues rise in first full reporting year since O2 buyout

Second-largest mobile operator Three’s pretax losses narrow to €43m from €392m

Three: full-year gross profit improved to €421 million from €260 million in 2014.

Three: full-year gross profit improved to €421 million from €260 million in 2014.

 

Losses narrowed at Ireland’s second-largest mobile operator Three in 2015. Revenues also jumped in the company’s first full reporting year since it acquired O2.

New accounts filed at the Companies Registration Office for Three Ireland (Hutchison) Limited show pretax losses fell from €392 million to €43 million.

Three, which has a 35 per cent market share and two million customers, recorded turnover of €694 million as against €438 million a year earlier.

Full-year gross profit improved to €421 million from €260 million in 2014 with gross margin increasing from 60 per cent to 61 per cent.

The company, which employs more than 1,000 people in Ireland, said selling and administrative expenses fell to €394 million from €594 million as the company began to achieve savings across the combined business.

Results

“This is the first full year of filed accounts since Three acquired O2 and they show some really strong results,” said Three Ireland chief executive Robert Finnegan.

“The turnover increase of €256 million and gross profit increase of €161 million, coupled with the benefit of synergies from combining the two businesses has resulted in an increase in ebitda from a negative ebitda of €268 million in 2014 to a positive ebitda of €173million in 2015 and an operating loss transformation from an operating loss of €334 million in 2014 to an operating profit of €28million in 2015,” he added.

Three, which is owned by Hutchison, completed the €850 million buyout of O2 Ireland from Telefonica in July 2014 after overcoming a number of regulatory hurdles. The operator, which promised a €300 million investment in its network following the acquisition, said 3,105 cell sites were in operation at the end of last year, proving coverage to more than 99.6 per cent of the country’s population. By year-end the company had upgraded 718 sites for 4G services.

Assets

Three said total assets less current liabilities increased to €1.557 million in 2015 from €1.516 million in the previous year.

Some 1,083 people were employed by the operator last year, up from 782 a year earlier. Staff costs, including wages and salaries, increased to €69.8 million from €48.2 million.

“From a customer perspective, our customer numbers also remain very steady with our total active customer base remaining at over two million, which increased during 2015 and continues to do so in 2016,” said Mr Finnegan.