Almaty, 14 April 2023 – Kcell Joint Stock Company (“Kcell” or the “Company”) (KASE: KCEL), the leading provider of mobile telecommunications services in Kazakhstan, presented its financial results for Q4 and 12 months of 2022.
Despite the challenges faced at the beginning of last year, the Company showed growth in key financial indicators. Kcell maintained positive dynamics due to the development of its own digital ecosystem, mobile financial services, B2B segment and retail handset sales. Kcell’s winning in the 5G frequency auction should be among the main drivers of the Company’s share price growth.
Growth of financial indicators
Total revenue for 12 months of 2022 grew by 12.8% to KZT 221.2 billion, service revenue increased by 12% to KZT 173.6 billion, EBITDA, excluding non-recurring costs, grew by 10.3% to KZT 90.8 billion. EBITDA margin increased to 42.0%. Net profit for 12 months of 2022 showed a 24.1% growth to KZT 40.3 billion.
The main drivers of financial and operational growth in 2022 included service revenues and a focus on more marginal streams. In the B2B segment, 14 industrial projects were implemented, including construction of private LTE networks. In B2C, the margin increased due to optimization of the tariff portfolio, improved CVM efficiency, and roaming revenue in the post-pandemic period.
Revenue from the sales of devices and accessories continues to show steady growth. In 2022, growth of 24% was achieved due to an increase of the average bill. The key factors were: the growth of the share in premium smartphones sales, as well as higher sales of accessories and gadgets due to a wider product range.
Network development and improvement of connection quality
In 2022, the Company invested KZT 41.6 billion, and most of the funds was used on network upgrade. As part of the network quality improvement program, the Company has installed and upgraded the network equipment at 1,272 base stations which resulted in an up to 40% increase in data transmission speeds at adjacent locations.
In rural areas 604 sites (including partner sites) were launched to provide mobile broadband access in those communities. The company provided new coverage and improved the network by upgrading and activating 246 base stations. It has also launched 119 sites on top of its commitments, and transferred 13 sites from satellite to terrestrial transmission.
Technology leadership with 5G
At the end of 2022, the Company, as part of a consortium with MT-S LLP (Altel and Tele2 brands), has won in a frequency auction and committed to build a fifth-generation network in Kazakhstan. By doing so, Kcell is significantly improving its frequency asset base, which is crucial for managing and monetizing the growing demand for data traffic. The Company sees the 5G license and timely access to new spectrum as the main arguments in its efforts to win customers in the high ARPU segment over the next 5 years. The Company is already in the active phase of network construction. Today, the 5G network operates in Almaty (18 locations), Shymkent (10 locations) and Turkestan (9 locations).
Kcell is successfully implementing the main pillars of its strategy: happy customers, happy employees, and satisfied shareholders. The level of customer loyalty index cNPS was 29% due to improved quality and range of services and customer experience. In addition, Kcell continues to work on the quality of life and work of its employees – the employee loyalty index eNPS was 37%. The company’s shareholder value has increased due to higher revenues and profitability.
Authorized person for Stock Exchange
Kcell is a national provider of the digital telecommunications services: mobile and fixed-mobile convergence (FMC) services, data transmission and Internet access, financial services, digital services and mobile applications, IT solutions in the field of system integration, the Internet of things, machine-to-machine connectivity, collection and processing of big data and cloud computing. Kcell is also a leading mobile operator in Kazakhstan providing the ‘smartphone+tariff’ service.
Kcell has become the largest digital ecosystem in Kazakhstan with a competitive advantage through its value-added services such as mobile financial services, mobile TV, online movies, music, books and magazines, as well as unique solutions for business customers. The company holds leading positions in the B2B market thanks to its strategy of vertical infrastructure solutions and development and implementation of the cutting-edge technologies. The company’s 4G/LTE network covers 67.5% of the country’s population and provides high quality services.
The company operates under its two brands – Kcell and activ that are widely recognized in our highly competitive telecom market due to the high quality of customer service. Thanks to its clear multi-brand architecture, Kcell increases its business efficiency in the B2C segment through optimal pricing for bundled offerings, customer base profitability management and network quality.