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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

VimpelCom Doubles Q2 Ruble Profit

VedomostiA woman walking into a VimpelCom office. The telecoms firm had a second-quarter profit of 22.6 billion rubles.

VimpelCom more than doubled its ruble net profit in the second quarter, it said Thursday, becoming the latest company to beat earnings forecasts in its second-quarter numbers.

Net profit clocked in at 22.6 billion rubles, or $702.5 million at an average rate of 32.17 rubles per dollar for the period. A year earlier, VimpelCom reported net profit of $470 million.

Forex gains included in the profit were in line with forecasts in dollar terms of $341 million. On the core earnings level, it reported a margin of 50.6 percent, compared with a consensus forecast of 48.9 percent.

“I am especially proud to report that revenue growth coupled with successful business integration and ongoing cost control yielded a consolidated fixed and mobile [operating income before depreciation and amortization] margin of 50.6,” chief executive Boris Nemsic said in a statement.

Revenue grew to 69.04 billion rubles from 61.68 billion rubles a year earlier, though it fell in dollar terms to an expected $2.15 billion from $2.61 billion. VimpelCom, which operates the Beeline brand, added 1 million mobile subscribers during the quarter for a total of 63.7 million, 19 percent more than a year earlier.

“Although our operations during the second quarter reflected the underlying robustness of the telecoms markets and our successful business execution, macroeconomic uncertainty still remains a significant factor in the current environment,” Nemsic said.

“Hence, looking forward we maintain our stance of cautious optimism,” he said.

VimpelCom, the country’s most leveraged telecoms operator, said it repaid $456 million during the quarter and refinanced part of the remainder into rubles. It has to pay about $2 billion of debt this year, of which $600                 million was repaid in the first quarter.

(Reuters, Bloomberg)