Robi Axiata, Bangladesh's second largest telecom operator, says it has suffered a loss of Tk 1.72 billion due to the devaluation of the taka against the dollar in the second quarter of 2022 despite steady growth in subscribers.
It has partly affected the company’s earnings per share, taking it back into negative territory. EPS was a loss of Tk 0.02 in the April-June quarter, compared to a positive Tk 0.09 a year earlier.
Revenue rose 3.7 percent year-on-year to Tk 21.05 billion in the second quarter, the company said in an emailed statement on Thursday. Revenue for the first six months of 2022 reached Tk 41.24 billion with a profit after tax of Tk 280 million.
Robi estimated that it would have a quarterly net profit of Tk 861.3 million and a half-yearly figure of Tk 1.31 billion without the unfavourable exchange rate.
“Losing our hard-earned profit to the devaluation of the taka against the dollar is very painful,” said Robi’s acting Chief Executive Officer M Riyaaz Rasheed.
Forex volatility is a major concern for the company at the moment since the company relies on the international market to buy telecom equipment, he said.
“We are also suffering due to the absence of a comprehensive mechanism for price regulation. We strongly believe that there is a win-win opportunity for the customers, the operators, as well as the regulator, with regards to devising a comprehensive price regulation regime,” Rasheed said.
“The longer we take to formulate it, the more painful it will be for the smaller operators in this intensely competitive market.”
Voice revenue increased 11.8 percent year-on-year in the second quarter, while data revenue declined 4.5 percent, according to the statement.
The company reached 54.5 million subscribers at the end of June, up 5.2 percent from a year earlier.