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SLT Group garners 25% PAT in 2020 despite COVID challenges

The Sri Lanka Telecom PLC (SLT) Group ended the 2020 financial year on a high note with a significant 25 per cent YoY growth in profit after tax to LKR 7.9 billion despite many challenges faced arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Group revenue climbed to LKR 91.1 billion for the year with a 6 per cent YoY growth, strongly underpinned by higher broadband revenue propelled by the accelerated fibre expansion programme and growth in mobile broadband services. Revenue for PEOTV and carrier services also advanced during the year, the group said in a media release on the year’s performance which included the merging of its subsidiary Mobitel into one SLT-Mobitel entity.

Group revenue for Q4 2020 rose by 4 per cent per cent QoQ to LKR 24 billion recording the highest quarterly revenue achieved for FY 2020.

The operating profit for the quarter increased by 27 per cent compared to the same quarter of the previous year reaching LKR 1.9 billion, however a decline of 33 per cent compared to 3Q 2020. Group profit after tax for the quarter was reported at LKR 1.1 billion, a drop of 48 per cent QoQ, mainly due to the higher operating costs and adverse impact from fluctuation in foreign currencies.

Mobitel reported a strong profitable growth due to simultaneous growth in revenue and reduction in operational expenditure. Mobitel revenue for FY 2020 stood at LKR 43.2 billion, up by per cent compared to FY 2019. Mobitel recorded its highest ever profit after tax of LKR 4.9 billion in FY 2020, an increase by 54 per cent YoY.

The group paid a total of LKR 17.1 billion as direct and indirect taxes including levies to the Government in FY 2020.

SLT Group Chairman, Rohan Fernando said: “Our financial results for 2020 have yet again demonstrated that SLT Group’s resilience and success in providing essential telecommunication services to the country and community, notwithstanding unprecedented challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. I am grateful to all our frontliners and staff for providing uninterrupted services to the country during challenging times.”

SLT Group Chief Executive Officer, Lalith Seneviratne noted: “We commenced 2021 with brand unification of SLT-Mobitel which is another milestone in the SLT Group’s legacy. The joined forces of SLT and Mobitel allow us to unify our capabilities and enhance our market brand presence and trust in the market place. In mid-2021, SLT-Mobitel aims to launch a pre-commercial 5G service using 3.5 GHz. Further, we have established a research and development centre to accelerate innovations in the group and maintain our edge in the market."

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