The country’s only listed telecommunications company, Botswana Telecommunication Corporation Limited (BTCL), had its shares climbing up by 11.8 percent this week to end trade at 142 Thebe per share.
This follows the release of the company’s financial results for the year ended March 2017 in which it reported a rise in Profits of P608.2 million, from a deficit of P370 million to P272.3 for the year. Its revenues grew by 8 percent to P1.6 billion.
The company’s financial statements show that it reduced its costs by 26 percent to P1.401 billion from P1.883 billion in the prior year. At the same time, the corporation has also reported that it has strong cash flows with cash and cash equivalents of P517 million.
A further breakdown of BTCL’s revenue shows that its fixed telephony revenues increased by 4 percent while fixed voice continues to provide a solid revenue base for the company contributing 32 percent to total revenues. On the other hand, the data services revenues increased by 21 percent, with contribution to total revenues increasing from 26 percent to 29 percent.
The group Managing Director, Anthony Masunga, stated that the company’s 2017-18 five strategic themes of transformation and growth is underpinned by a drive to create a sustainable business and shareholder value. They are growth, operational efficiency, high performance, high performance culture, innovation and customer experience.
“Our priority is to modernise telecommunications infrastructure and modernise enterprise IT infrastructure,” he said.
BTCL says it intends to ensure a return of value to shareholders by delivering on its financial commitments as outlined in the Initial Public Offering (IPO) prospectus.
During the financial year under review, BTCL reviewed its dividend policy, committing to a pay-out ratio of 50-65 percent. As a result, in line with the new pay-out policy, the group declared a final gross dividend of 11.09 Thebe per share, which together with the interim (3.6 Thebe) represents 6 percent of earnings per share.
BTCL Finance Director Abel Bogatsu said that total dividends paid during the year amounted to P90 million comprising a March 2016 dividend of P52 million which was paid in August 2016, and a September 2016 interim dividend of P38 million which was paid in February 2017.