TIM sells 2.3mn smartphones in Q1 as net profits surge to US$164mn

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Brazilian mobile operator TIM (NYSE: TSU) sold some 2.3mn smartphones during the first quarter of the year, an increase of 64% compared with the same period in 2010, company president Luca Luciani said during a conference call with investors.

Luciani highlighted that TIM is selling the devices without subsidies, and said that "we are focusing on accelerating our penetration in the data segment."

The executive also said smartphone sales accounted for 40% of total mobile phone sales during the quarter, compared with 16% in the year-ago period. "In the month of April alone, TIM sold 1.4mn mobile devices, with smartphones accounting for 50%," he added.

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The company posted a net profit of 213mn reais (US$164mn) in the first quarter of 2011, up nearly four times compared with 55mn reais in the year-ago period, TIM said in its latest earnings statement.

TIM's revenue reached 5.44bn reais, climbing 17.3% compared with 4.64bn reais in the same quarter last year.

The operator's Ebitda reached 1bn reais, an increase of 9% compared with the year-ago quarter, while the Ebitda margin was at 27.5% in 1Q11 compared with 28.7% in 1Q10.

Meanwhile, TIM's Arpu fell 13.5% year-on-year to 20.8 reais.

TIM ended March with 52.8mn clients, climbing 24.7% year-on-year. During the quarter, the operator added 1.8mn new mobile lines. Prepaid customers totaled 45.1mn at end-Q1, while post-paid clients totaled 7.7mn.

The operator also said its 3G coverage currently reaches 258 cities across the country, or 56% of the country's population.

The operator's quarterly capex reached 297mn reais, down 57% year-on-year. TIM expects total investment this year to reach 2.9bn reais.

TIM is controlled by European telecoms operator Telecom Italia (NYSE: TI).