ECONOMY

OTE results suffer as clients leave

Telecommunications giant OTE registered a decline in revenues and profits in the first nine months of the year, according to figures that major shareholder Deutsche Telekom (DT) issued on Thursday and the OTE group is expected to publish on Friday in Greece.

OTE revenues amounted to 1.44 billion euros in the year to September, posting a 7.7 drop from the same period in 2011, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) fell by 9.7 percent year-on-year, coming to 409 million euros.

Cellphone subsidiary Cosmote showed an annual revenue decline of 6.2 percent to 1.16 billion euros in Greece, while EBITDA reached 477 million euros, down 2.7 percent from 2011.

DT said that OTE group activities in Romania (Romtelecom and Cosmote Romania) showed a 3 percent drop in revenues that amounted to 784 million euros. The decline in Bulgaria (Globul) was more significant, coming to 6.9 percent, as revenues did not exceed 285 million euros and EBITDA fell 10.2 percent.

The German telecom firm said that all markets where OTE has been active are having problems and warned that the strong recession pressures in Greece this year will continue into 2013. However the loss of some 50,000 OTE customers in the third quarter of the year has not helped the corporation?s results. As a result, the total number of telephone connections the company has lost since September 2011 amounts to 350,000.

OTE is expected on Friday to announce a voluntary exit program for 1,800 of its employees who would obtain the right to retirement in the next three years, according to workers? union OME-OTE.

The corporation?s management believes between 1,000 and 1,100 employees will use this program, which is expected to cost some 100 million euros.