BT End Year on New Wave High

BT has issued its Q4 and full year result showing that BT is transforming its business from traditional lines and calls to the digital age with new wave revenues now accounting for nearly a third of sales.

Sir Christopher Bland, Chairman, commenting on the full year results, said: “This is an excellent set of full year results delivered in a competitive and fast-changing environment. Revenues for the full year have grown by 6 per cent; new wave revenues, which grew by 38 per cent to £6.3 billion, now represent around one third of the group’s business. We have continued to transform the business at a fast pace whilst growing our earnings per share before specific items by 8 per cent to 19.5 pence.

“I am pleased to announce a full year dividend of 11.9 pence per share, 14 per cent higher than last year. We are confident in our ability to improve shareholder returns and accelerate the strategic transformation of the business.”

Fourth Quarter Highlights

• Revenue of £5,134 million, up 7 per cent (5 per cent excluding acquisitions)

• New wave revenue of £1,851 million, up 28 per cent, represents 36 per cent of total revenue

• EBITDA before specific items and leaver costs of £1,498 million, up 1 per cent

• Profit before taxation, specific items and leaver costs of £629 million, up 4 per cent

• Earnings per share before specific items and leaver costs of 5.7 pence, up 8 per cent, the sixteenth consecutive quarter of year on year growth

• Broadband net additions of 0.8 million, of which BT Retail’s share was 31 per cent

Ben Verwaayen, Chief Executive, commenting on the fourth quarter results, said: “This quarter’s results are a terrific set of numbers. They show BT firing on all cylinders, with EBITDA, revenue and earnings per share all growing. These results provide further evidence that our strategy of embracing change is working. We have now delivered sixteen consecutive quarters of growth in earnings per share.

“BT is now a truly global company, delivering services to more than 170 countries with more than 20 per cent of our networked IT services contract wins outside the UK. BT lines now carry 8 million broadband connections and we have started rolling out speeds of up to 8 Mbit/s. BT has changed very significantly from 4 years ago, and the transformation is accelerating.”

Full Year Highlights

• Revenue of £19,514 million, up 6 per cent (3 per cent excluding the impact of reductions to mobile termination rates and acquisitions)

• New wave revenue of £6,282 million, up 38 per cent, represents 32 per cent of total revenue

• Profit before taxation and specific items of £2,177 million, up 5 per cent

• Earnings per share before specific items of 19.5 pence, up 8 per cent

• Free cash flow of £1,612 million and net debt reduced to £7.5 billion

• Full year dividend of 11.9 pence per share, up 14 per cent

Broadband end users of 7.9 million, at 31 March 2006, up 58 per cent

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