The Vodacom Group, the African telecoms group 65% owned by Vodafone, has said its annual net profit fell 31% despite higher revenues, largely due to an impairment charge taken in the first half of the financial year. In the twelve months ended 31 March 2010 revenue was ZAR58.54 billion (USD72.3 billion) an increase of 5.6% on the year before. Net profit attributable to equity shareholders was ZAR4.2 billion down from ZAR6.09 billion while operating profit decreased 6.4% to ZAR11.24 billion mainly due to impairment losses of ZAR3.37 billion and a 10% increase in depreciation and amortisation. The group EBITDA margin rose from 32.8% to 33.8% and EBITDA increased by 8.7% to ZAR19.78 billion.
Vodacom reported that customer numbers in its domestic market declined by 4.9% to 26.3 million as a result of a 1.9 million reduction in pre-paid customers following the implementation of legislation in South Africa. Blended ARPU was ZAR132 per month, down ZAR1 on the previous year, while minutes of use was steady at 80 per month. Internationally, Vodacom ended fiscal 2009/10 with 13.63 million customers, an increase of 13.7% year-on-year, with the star performer being Mozambique, which saw its customer base jump 42.5% to 2.33 million.