DUBAI, Feb 16 (Reuters) - Bahrain Telecommunications Co (Batelco) reported a 22 percent increase in fourth-quarter profit on Monday.
The former monopoly has now posted rising profits in four of the past six quarters following its largest ever acquisition. Before that, its profits fell in 16 of 17 quarters to the three months ending June 30, 2013.
Batelco made a net profit of 8.4 million dinars ($22.28 million) in final three months of 2014, up from 6.9 million dinars in the year-earlier period, Reuters calculated based on a company financial statement published on Monday.
SICO Bahrain forecast Batelco would make a quarterly profit of 15.3 million dinars.
In Bahrain, Batelco competes with units of Kuwait’s Zain and Saudi Telecom Co as well as about 10 internet providers.
Batelco, seeking to offset declining domestic profit and revenue, in April 2013 completed the $570 million purchase of Cable & Wireless Communications’ Monaco and Islands Division, although some of this deal subsequently fell foul of regulators.
Batelco made an annual profit of 49.3 million dinars in 2014, it said in the statement. This is up from 43.6 million dinars in 2013.
The company also owns Jordanian telecoms operator Umniah, plus minority stakes in Yemeni mobile operator Sabafon and companies in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. ($1 = 0.3770 Bahraini dinars) (Reporting by Matt Smith; Editing by Olzhas Auyezov)