Eir returns to annual revenue growth for first time since 2008

2 Sep 201670 Shares

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Eir CEO Richard Moat. The telecoms operator is back in the black.

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Ireland’s largest telecoms operator Eir has reported full year revenues of €1.3bn, up €45m from last year – the first time the operator has reported annual growth since 2008.

For the full year. the operator reported EBITDA of €505m, or €24m, before storm costs have been accounted for.

The national operator reported Q4 revenues of €336m, up €11m on last year.

Eir revealed that, so far, some 1.6m premises in Ireland are now supplied by fibre technology.

‘We have passed 1.6m premises with fibre at the end of June 2016, and our rollout of high-speed broadband to 300,000 premises in rural Ireland is proceeding at pace’
– RICHARD MOAT, CEO, EIR

The company said that 50pc of its customer base is now on fibre-based broadband.

Eir reported that it has 854,000 broadband connections, which is up 18,000 in the quarter.

In terms of TV services, Eir Vision has a base of 54,000 customers, with 27pc of take-up by the company’s consumer fibre base.

On the mobile front, Eir now has 1m mobile customers, of whom 47pc are on post-pay contracts, up 3pc year-on-year.

Fibre the nation

“We have passed 1.6 million premises with fibre at the end of June 2016, and our rollout of high-speed broadband to 300,000 premises in rural Ireland is proceeding at pace,” said Eir CEO Richard Moat.

“We have accelerated our 4G rollout programme and have now reached 84pc population coverage, which will grow to 95pc coverage by early 2017. We are, and will remain, fully committed to Ireland’s digital future, and we are doing more than any other operator in terms of both fixed and mobile network investment.”

In terms of revenue generating units (RGUs), Eir said that triple and quad-play bundle penetration increased to 21pc with, on average, 2.06 RGUs per household.

“We have also secured a much improved and flexible capital structure and reduced our cost of debt from 5.2pc to 4.5pc,” said Huib Costermans, Eir’s CFO.

“This was achieved through our successful bond refinancing, which resulted in €17m of interest cost savings, amending our senior debt facility document to align it to market standards and raising a revolving credit facility, which allows us to make better use of our cash on balance sheet while supporting the entry of a new long-term shareholder, GIC. We also welcomed the credit ratings upgrades achieved earlier in the year.”

Updated at 3.45pm on 2 September 2016 to correct the misstated value of Q4 revenues.

Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com