GO plc has reported positive financial results with operating profit jumping from €18 million in 2013 to €21.8 million in 2014, an increase of 21.0%.
Both years however include items considered to be of unusual nature, size or incidence. Normalised operating Group profit for the year ended 31 December 2014 amounted to €24.3 million (2013: €20.8 million) whilst normalised EBITDA amounted to €49.2 million (2013: €48.4 million).
GO reported a profit before tax of €20.3 million (2013: €15.6 million). The earnings per share amounted to €0.144 as against €0.116 in 2013. This growth in profitability is the result of stable revenues and lower costs.
Although at €122.3 million Group revenues are at the same level of those achieved in the comparative year, the Group managed to grow revenue from retail activities which growth made up for the decline in income from wholesale activities, a direct consequence of regulatory intervention.
Whilst retail revenue from legacy fixed voice service continued to decline, GO experienced growth in all other retail sectors, particularly mobile.
Cost of sales, administrative and related costs, excluding items of unusual nature, size or incidence, amounted to €99.1 million (2013: €102.4 million). The overall reduction of €3.3 million (3.2%) is the result of a combination of lower wholesale costs and continued focus on managing costs without compromising on customer experience.
Cash generated from operations amounted to €48.8 million, an increase of €1.7 million over 2013. In 2014 the Group’s investments amounted to a cash outflow of €26.1 million.
Excluding the investment in the joint venture of €6.6 million, €20.1 million investment in property, plant, equipment and intangible assets are €0.7 million more than the value invested in 2013 as the Group maintains an intensive investment programme through which it is upgrading its various networks and launching new technologies which enable the provision of improved services and innovative products.
One of the main initiatives which gained momentum during the year under review is investments in Fibre-to-the-Home (FTTH). Investments in FTTH will be maintained in the coming years and complimented with investments in 4G to ensure that GO customers continue to enjoy the best possible fixed-line and mobile broadband experience.
During 2014 GO reduced its borrowings by €14.8 million, extended a loan of €4.5 million to Cablenet Systems Limited and paid dividends amounting to €7.0 million but still closed the year with cash and cash equivalents of €11.6 million.
Following another year of robust operating performance, shareholders’ funds as at year end increased from €103.5 million as at December 2013 to €110.0 million as at end 2014 as the Group’s performance during 2014 exceeded the distribution of retained earnings as a result of a dividend of €0.07 per share net of taxation paid during the year. The Group’s net asset value per share stands at €1.09, an increase of 6.3% over 2013 which stood at €1.02.
The Group’s total asset base stands at €223.9 million of which €55.4 million are represented by property. The Group’s total asset base is 49.1% funded through equity (2013: 44.0%).
The board is recommending that the Annual General Meeting approves the payment of a final net dividend of €0.07 per share. The payment of this net dividend amounts to the sum of €7,091,734. The final dividend will be paid on the 8 May 2015 to all shareholders who are on the shareholders’ register as at Thursday 2 April 2015.
Source: Malta Today