The group continues to invest in networks and strengthen its core business as well as transformational initiatives to drive longer term growth. According to the company, as a result of these investments, it has incurred higher depreciation, spectrum amortisation charges, and increased costs from the acquisition of digital companies.

The group also registered positive charges of S$67 million, including Australia’s Optus’ ex-gratia payments for the restructuring of its workforce and accelerated depreciation charges related to Globe’s network modernisation and IT transformation programmes.

These factors, together with the impact of the weaker foreign currencies, led to an 8% decline in net profit to S$827 million. Excluding these exceptional charges, underlying net profit fell 2% to S$874 million. Group revenue fell 5% to S$4.60 billion and EBITDA was stable at S$1.26 billion. The company also continues to generate strong free cash flow. For the nine months ended December 2012, group free cash flow rose 1% to S$2.49 billion.