PTCL’s strong financial performance in 2022
PTCL Group, the leading provider of telecom and ICT services in Pakistan, has achieved double-digit revenue growth of 10.2% in fiscal year 2022. Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL), posted revenue growth of 8.6%, driven by strong performance in both retail and business segments, while Ufone posted revenue growth of 7.1%. The Group’s subsidiary, U Microfinance Bank, maintained strong momentum and posted revenue growth of 35.4% in 2022. The company announced its annual financial results for the year 2022 at the Board meeting in Islamabad.
Key Financial Performance Highlights
- PTCL Group’s revenue is up 10.2% year-on-year to Rs 151.6 billion, mainly driven by strong performance in the consumer segment, led by fixed broadband, mobile data and wholesale and business solutions along with microfinance services.
- The Group’s profitability remained under pressure due to significant increases in power and fuel rates, devaluation of the Pakistani rupee against the US dollar, higher interest rates and other costs associated with the acquisition of the 4G spectrum and the roll-out of the associated network. The Group posted a net loss of Rs 7.8 billion.
- PTCL continued its strong performance throughout 2022. PTCL’s revenue of Rs 83.4 billion for the year 2022, the highest ever in its history, is 8.6% higher than in 2021, mainly driven by growth in the broadband and wholesale and business solutions segments.
- Flash Fiber, PTCL’s premium Fiber-To-The-Home (FTTH) service, experienced tremendous growth with the highest net additions within the FTTH market by 2022.
- The company posted an operating profit of Rs 4.9 billion which is 17% higher compared to 2021.
- Net profit of Rs 9 billion, the highest since 2013, is 31.7% higher compared to last year.
PTCL continued to upgrade its existing infrastructure and network, in addition to expanding its premium FTTH internet Flash Fiber across the country to provide seamless connectivity for a better customer experience. Rapid FTTH deployment and strong performance in the enterprise and wholesale segments are the cornerstone of PTCL’s revenue growth, which, along with its focus on cost optimization programs, has significantly increased the company’s profitability.
PTCL Consumer Affairs:
PTCL’s fixed broadband business has posted 12.2% year-over-year growth, propelled by aggressive FTTH expansion. Flash Fiber showed an unprecedented growth of 102.7%, capturing the lion’s share of the market’s net additions, while the PTCL IPTV segment also grew 8.1% year-over-year. Voice and wireless broadband segments declined due to customer conversion to OTT services and competition from mobile operators.
PTCL has recently launched Pakistan’s largest OTT streaming platform ‘SHOQ’ to provide premium entertainment, sports and news content to all data users. As internet penetration has exploded in recent years, Pakistan was in need of a quality local OTT service that provides affordable entertainment.
The business services segment continued its momentum and maintained market leadership in the IP bandwidth, cloud, data center and other ICT services segments. PTCL’s Enterprise business grew by 18.8% compared to last year, while the Carrier and Wholesale businesses continued their growth momentum and achieved total sales growth of 11%. International voice revenue increased by 8.5% compared to last year. Total Business Solutions revenue grew 12.5% year-over-year.
As the national telecom carrier and connectivity backbone in Pakistan, PTCL Group strives to provide innovative solutions to accelerate growth for a ‘Digital Pakistan’ through a robust telecommunications infrastructure and diversified portfolio of services with enhanced customer experience.
In the year 2022, Ufone has registered positive net additions with a 3.9% year-over-year growth in subscriber base and gained market share within the industry. Since acquiring spectrum, Ufone has grown from strength to strength, with revenue growing 7.1% year-over-year through 2022, despite the challenges of the Advance Income Tax (AIT) increase and mobile termination rate (MTR) reduction and the recent flooding in the country.
This growth has been achieved through investments in networks, an aggressive product offering focused on data and regional play. The year 2022 was marked by a primary focus on the enrichment of data portfolios. A range of new offerings targeting the data-savvy younger segment was launched, resulting in more than 40% growth in data revenue.
Thanks to the modernization of the infrastructure and the rapid implementation of 4G services across the country, the company has raised the bar for the quality of voice and data services. The Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) has named Ufone as the No. 01 voice and data network in its nationwide benchmarking of service quality in 2022.
Ufone 4G officially partners with Islamabad United, the most successful franchise in HBL PSL history and the winner of the first and third editions of the tournament. The company will become the official telecommunications partner for the franchise for PSL 8.
In the second quarter, VIS Credit Rating Company assigned initial entity ratings of ‘AA-/A-1’ (Double A Minus/A-One) to Ufone with the prospect of the ratings being awarded as ‘Stable’. This confirms Ufone’s financial strength through an independent rating exercise that also indicates high credit quality and good fundamental protection factors and testifies to stakeholder confidence in Ufone.
U Bank, the microfinance and branchless banking subsidiary of PTCL, continued its growth trajectory, achieving revenue growth of 35.4% last year by deepening its advances and investment portfolio, despite the challenging macroeconomic environment, exacerbated by the recent flood. The bank’s balance sheet position reached Rs 221 billion as the bank continued to diversify its asset classes and funding streams while delivering a positive bottom-line impact. As the six business canvases of the bank, namely: Rural Retail Banking, Corporate Finance & Investment Banking, Islamic Banking, Urban Retail Banking, Corporate Banking and Digital Banking take on their different forms and structures, the Bank is working to create a Retail Challenger Bank to be focused on expanding banking services in line with the unique needs of its diverse and heterogeneous customer base. With the core mission of microfinance at its core, the bank’s business model is evolving to capture new segments and client classes to bring more of Pakistan into the banking network and advance its ambition of financial and social inclusion.
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
PTCL Group has been at the forefront of relief efforts in the aftermath of one of the most devastating floods in the country. PTCL and Ufone announced toll-free calls to aid rescue services and opened the doors of their medical centers across the country to treat sick and injured flood victims. In addition to the donation to the Prime Minister’s Flood Relief Fund, PTCL Group partnered with the Akhuwat Foundation and the Pakistan Red Crescent Society (PRCS) to provide clean and safe drinking water and food to affected communities in Sindh and Balochistan. To further support those affected by the flood, PTCL Group also donated winter coats to affected communities in Quetta, Pishin and Killa Saifullah areas.
In 2022, PTCL led the third cohort of its flagship internship program ‘Justuju’ for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) in collaboration with ‘Network of Organizations Working with Persons with Disabilities, Pakistan’ (NOWPDP) and DeafTawk. Ufone also donated “Blaze” devices to KP Women Civic Internship program participants. In addition, PTCL Group, along with the Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF), initiated a women’s empowerment program to promote the financial inclusion of women in KP.
PTCL and Ufone have provided life jackets to the fishing communities in Karachi to ensure their safety at sea. Ufone also provided food stands and carts to local people in Murree to help them make a living. The Group undertook a range of on- and off-site activities to raise awareness regarding early detection and treatment of breast cancer and our efforts were recognized by the First Lady, Mrs. Samina Arif Alvi. In addition, the PTCL volunteer force conducted its annual tree-planting campaign to contribute to environmental sustainability in the country.
PTCL also provided free calling services to families of Pakistanis stranded in and around Ukraine in the aftermath of the Russo-Ukrainian conflict.
PTCL Group plays a key role in supporting the Universal Service Fund (USF) efforts to develop telecommunications services in underserved and underserved areas of the country. PTCL has signed an agreement for the deployment of fiber optic cable in the interior of Sindh including Dadu, Jamshoro, Hyderabad and Larkana. During the year, the Group completed network deployment in the remote areas of Lasbela, Panjgur, Kech, Qilla Saifullah, Mastung, Bolan and Gawadar.