(Yicai Global) March 19 -- Mobile carrier China Telecommunications posted a 13.9 percent rise in net profit to CNY21.1 billion (USD3.2 billion) for last year, beating a market expectation of CNY20.4 billion. The firm easily eclipsed the CNY10.2 billion net revenue posted by industry rival China Unicom
China Telecom achieved a 3 percent increase in operating revenue to CNY377.1 billion (USD50.2 billion) for 2018, driven by mobile, internet data centers and cloud services, the Beijing-based telecoms giant said in a statement. Service revenue made up CNY350.4 billion, rising 5.9 percent annually.
Mobile service turnover grew 9.1 percent to CNY167.7 billion for the carrier which saw users increase nearly one-fifth to 300 million. Fourth-generation network users surged by 60.4 million to 240 million to make up 80 percent of all its mobile users. Mobile internet data also nearly quadrupled last year.
The carrier's 4G users averaged 5.5 gigabytes per month and revenue from such traffic expanded by nearly one-quarter. The firm gained CNY182.7 billion from fixed-network services, up 3.1 percent, and registered a 12.3 million increase in wired broadband network users to 146 million, 66 percent of which are users of 100-megabyte-speed networks or faster.
Sales from the firm's data centers and cloud services rose 22.4 percent and 85.9 percent, respectively, while its Bestpay service has over 43 million monthly active users and achieved more than CNY1.6 trillion (USD238.2 billion) in transactions last year. As of late last year, the firm had 1.4 million 4G base stations.
Editor: William Clegg