BT all-Ireland revenues up 1pc to stg£757m

11 May 2012

BT Ireland CEO Colm O'Neill

Telecoms and ICT provider BT this morning reported a 1pc increase in revenues for the year of stg£757m. It said its transformation process, ongoing inrastructure rollout north and south and the delivery of large retail and wholesale contracts helped drive a 9pc increase in profits.

BT Ireland CEO Colm O’Neill said the company’s free cash flow is up 13pc year on year as a result of the ongoing transformation of the company.

“We have delivered increased revenues, profits and free cash flow, despite the economic headwinds, which demonstrates the stability and strength of our business.

“By continuing to transform our cost base and re-invest for growth, our products and solutions portfolio has never been stronger.  

“Continued investment in building advanced communications networks across the island, coupled with excellent IT services capabilities, is proving to be BT’s compelling differentiator in this market.”

Consumer division

BT Ireland’s Consumer division, which operates in Northern Ireland, recorded strong demand for BT Infinity, its superfast fibre-broadband service, which provides consumers with download speeds of up to 76Mbps. Take up increased by more than four-fold year on year.

There has been rapid growth in Wi-Fi and BT’s network of Wi-Fi hotspots in Northern Ireland has grown to more than 168,000.

More than 68pc of BT consumer customers have now signed up for BT’s inclusive call packages offering unlimited calls to fixed lines in the UK and Ireland. Demand for BT Vision, the company’s TV service, gathered momentum in the year, and is expected to be boosted by Northern Ireland’s Digital TV Switchover in October 2012.

Business division

A strong portfolio of network and IT services helped BT Business increase revenues year on year, and secure a variety of contracts with business and government organisations including Allianz Group, Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, Belfast Metropolitan College, Elavon Financial Services, FBD Insurance, Randox Laboratories, ROI Department of Social Protection, NI Department of Finance & Personnel, the Police Service of Northern Ireland and Tourism Ireland.  

BT Business recorded double-digit percentage revenue growth in IT services/hardware for the third year running, cementing BT Ireland’s position as a leading partner of Avaya, Cisco, EMC and HP.  

In Northern Ireland, BT Business sales of fibre broadband, BT Infinity, more than trebled year on year as businesses adopt superfast broadband to underpin their growth.   

BT Ireland’s Wholesale division is now the No 1 wholesaler of fixed-line services in Northern Ireland, and the second largest in the Republic of Ireland, boosted by BT’s significant investment programme in network infrastructure on both sides of the border. BT’s fibre rollout in Northern Ireland is one of the most rapid in the world, and has now reached 89pc coverage with more than 750,000 premises passed.

Broadband rollout in Republic of Ireland

In the Republic of Ireland, BT is significantly increasing its local loop unbundling (LLU) footprint, giving the company the capability to deliver high-speed broadband to more than 1.1m phone lines around the country at speeds of up to 24Mbs.

Multiple operators are now using BT’s LLU network to enable them to offer high-speed broadband in the Republic.

Other wholesale contracts signed during the year include Telefónica Ireland, Three Ireland and Vodafone Ireland.

BT Ireland’s roll-out of Total Transmission, an advanced next-generation fibre network in urban and provincial areas in the Republic, is on track, and is providing high-speed, low-cost access to meet the significant transmission bandwidth requirements of businesses, government organisations and communications providers.

BT is delivering up to 100Gbps capability across this network and an expected future capability of 1 Terabit as this technology matures.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years