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KUALA LUMPUR: Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) is confident of its prospects for the financial year ending December 2014 despite the fall in net profit in the third quarter.

It expects data and broadband to continue to drive its growth in the current year, supported by domestic demand, strong private investments and improving external demand.

TM group chief executive officer Tan Sri Zamzamzairani Mohd Isa said there was continued growth in the first nine months of the year.

“We recorded group revenue of RM8.1 billion year-to-date, an increase of 5.6 per cent against the corresponding period last year.

“Our profit-after-tax and minority interest stood at RM613.5 million, impacted by the absence of tax incentives. Our capital expenditure/revenue ratio showed improvement, reducing from 14.5 per cent for year-to-date September last year to 11.7 per cent this year,” he said in a statement.

TM’s net profit in the third quarter ended September 30 declined 21.6 per cent to RM188.85 million from RM240.88 million in the previous corresponding quarter.

It is the first time this year that the telecommunications giant’s net profit has dipped below RM200 million.

Group revenue during the quarter under review, however, grew to RM2.63 billion, compared with RM2.61 billion previously.

TM attributed the increase mainly to the Internet segment, where its broadband customer base grew 1.3 per cent year-on-year to 2.2 million. Its UniFi take-up rate grew 15.3 per cent year-on-year to 700,000 customers.

“We recently expanded TMgo coverage to Gerik in Perak, in addition to Kedah and Malacca.

“We also opened our first TMgo Experiential Centre in Gerik as part of our efforts to bring the 4G broadband experience to the local community,” added Zamzairani.

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