New Zealand's largest telecommunications company Spark
Wellington - AFP
Spark, New Zealand's largest telecommunications company, posted a 93.3 percent rise in annual net profit on Friday, with one-off items preventing the carrier slipping into negative territory.
The company, which changed its name from Telecom Corp. earlier this month, said net profit for the 12 months to the end of June was NZ$460 million ($386 million).
However, factoring in one-off items, including the sale of its Australian business AAPT and a restructuring charge that weighed on last year's accounts, Spark's adjusted net profit was down 7.7 percent at NZ$323.
Total operating revenues dipped 2.6 percent to NZ$3.64 billion but the company said it expected "modest" revenue growth in the current year as Spark continued to expand its mobile business.
"Our growth in the mobile market has been excellent," managing director Simon Moutter said. "In the second half of the year we added another 83,000 mobile connections... and now have over two million mobile connections."
Spark has shed more than 1,000 jobs in recent years as it restructures and seeks to become more than a mobile and fixed-line provider, branching out into areas such as entertainment and cloud computing to meet evolving demand.
"Focus on customers and continued growth in mobile, data and IT services is creating stronger momentum and the potential to earnings growth in FY15," Moutter said.
Spark shares were down 1.03 percent at NZ$2.88 in early afternoon trading on an NZX 50 market that was marginally higher overall.