Singtel posts net profit of $1.95 billion in FY2022

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Singtel's FY2022 net profit grew two and a half times to $1.95 billion despite a 2% drop in revenue to $15.34 billion

Singtel’s net profit for FY2022 for the 12 months to March 31 grew two and a half times to $1.95 billion primarily due to a net exceptional gain from the group’s divestment of its 70% equity stake in Australia Tower Network compared to a net exceptional loss last year. Underlying net profit improved 11% to $1.92 billion, mainly lifted by Airtel’s resilient turnaround. Operating revenue fell 2% to $15.34 billion while Ebitda was also down 2% to $3.77 billion, reflecting lower NBN migration revenue, the continued impact of Covid and challenges in the carriage business. Excluding NBN migration revenue and Jobs Support Scheme (JSS) credits, operating revenue was stable, with Ebitda and Ebit growing 8% and 33% respectively, driven by growth in mobile service in Australia.

The regional associates’ pre-tax profit contribution grew 21% to $2.07 billion. This was driven by Airtel’s double-digit increases in operating revenue and Ebitda as it staged a sturdy recovery in India and saw sustained growth in its African operations. While the regional associates were impacted by Covid-related movement restrictions, Globe’s performance was further affected by Typhoon Odette in the Philippines as well as an increase in depreciation and finance charges. AIS also faced higher depreciation and amortisation charges from network and spectrum investments.

In May 2021, digital marketing arm Amobee was placed under strategic review. An exceptional noncash impairment charge of $310 million was made in March 2022 and Amobee is now classified as a subsidiary held for sale. Singtel’s net debt fell to $10.1 billion, from $12.4 billion a year ago, as cash and bank balances were boosted by cash inflows from divestments. Free cash flow for the year fell 9% to $3.08 billion on lower operating cash flow attributable to working capital movements and higher tax payments, partially offset by higher dividends from associates.

The Board has proposed a final ordinary dividend of 4.8 cents per share. Together with the interim dividend of 4.5 cents per share, the ordinary dividends for FY2022would be 9.3 cents per share, totalling approximately $1.5 billion. This represents a payout ratio of 80% of underlying net profit and a growth of 24% y-o-y.

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