Network operators’ revenues down in first quarter

The revenue of Vietnamese network operators has suffered an uncharacteristic low in the first quarter of this year due to new legislation reducing top-up promotions for pre-paid subscribers from 50 percent to 20 percent. The reduction of the promotion was put into force last month.

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MobiFone Corporation reported a year-on-year increase of 6.3 per cent in revenue in the first quarter of the year. 

The country’s three biggest network operators reported their business results for the first quarter at a meeting held by the Ministry of Information and Communications last week.

The Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications Group (VNPT) said that its business plan for the first three months of the year has many changes from previous years.

The group has altered promotions for its mobile services. Whereas before subscribers could claim back 50 percent of their top up in the first three months of the year, that number is now just 20 percent. As a result subscribers are topping up with less enthusiasm than in previous years and VNPT’s mobile revenue is consequently down from the same period last year.

According to a VNPT representative, the decrease in revenue may be due to the fact that in the month leading up to the change in policy, top-up cards were sold in large numbers so that subscribers could take advantage of the 50 percent promotion before the new regulation on promotions took effect.

As a result, many customers may have purchased several top up cards to save for later, causing a delay in revenue, rather than a dip, a representative of VNPT said.

The group’s consolidated revenues were equivalent to the same period last year, reaching 24 percent of the year’s plan, while its profit increased 5.6 percent, reaching 21.5 percent of the plan.

Meanwhile, the military-run telecom group, Viettel, reported that it had achieved 23.4 percent of the whole year’s revenue plan in the first quarter.

A representative of Viettel said that the current trend in the world of telecom is 3G and 4G data. Applications such as WhatsApp and Zalo are running off of data.

In Vietnam, the price of voice and SMS services is down, but the management of 3G and 4G data is not tight enough, as a result there are some data packages “dumping" the market.

The Viettel representative said that operators should reduce the cost of their voice and SMS services, while increasing the cost of data packages in order to keep up with future trends.

Meanwhile, the MobiFone Corporation reported a year-on-year increase of 6.3 percent in revenue in the first quarter of the year.

However, like other mobile operators, MobiFone’s voicing and texting revenues reduced. The corporation’s profit in the first quarter reached 22 percent of the whole year’s plan.

Source: VietNamNet

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