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Hutchison Telecommunications
(Australia) Limited
ACN 003 677 227

Level 3, 504 Pacific Highway
St.Leonards    NSW    2065
Ph: 02 9964 4646
Fax: 02 9964 4649

Hutchison halves EBITDA loss in second half year

Sydney, 27 February 2002 - Hutchison Telecommunications (Australia) Limited (ASX:HTA) (Hutchison) today announced its full year results for 2001.

Financial Highlights:

  • Operating revenue of $418.6 million, a 3% increase on the prior year despite disposal of the GSM resale business in October 2001.

  • Orange Mobile revenue doubled from $41.3 million in first half year, to $83.0 million in the second half year.

  • EBITDA loss of $35.4 million for the second half of 2001, a 50% improvement on the first half loss of $77.5 million.

  • NPAT loss of $137.0 million for the full year, including a $15.3 million net gain on the sale of the GSM business and a favourable capitalisation adjustment of $11.8 million due to compliance with a new accounting standards directive requiring the capitalisation of direct subscriber acquisition costs.

The Orange Mobile subscriber base reached 192,526 at the end of December 2001. The base now consists of approximately 208,000 subscribers. Net subscriber growth improved in the second half of 2001 to 63,003 compared to 54,820 in the first half.

CEO Mr Kevin Russell said, "In the second half of last year we restructured the Orange Mobile business to reduce operating costs and improve profit margins. The initiatives delivered better operating performance in the second half of the year and laid the foundations for stronger operating margins in 2002.?

"We believe that our simple, low cost voice plans will allow us to grow our share of the market and deliver acceptable margins. We are on track to achieve our immediate goal of achieving a positive EBITDA position for our 2G business by the end of 2002."

Average revenue per subscriber (ARPU) for the Orange Mobile post paid product of $69 per month was achieved in the second half, compared to $66 for the first half despite challenging market conditions.

Driving the improvement in subscriber growth and financial performance, half-on-half, were several initiatives, including:

  • Repositioning of Orange Mobile from a Local Zone product to a simple, mobility based product.

  • Introducing non-subsidised handset plans, with subscriber acquisition costs falling from $445 per connection in the first half to $250 in the second half.

  • Leveraging the introduction of Mobile Number Portability.

  • Driving cost savings across the 2G businesses.

  • Rationalising sales and distribution channels.

Aside from restructuring existing operations to deliver improved earnings performance, the other key activity of the Company during 2001 was building the 3G business.

Within total capital expenditure for 2001 of $659.9 million, 3G expenditure was $426.9 million, comprising $196.1 million for the 2.1 GHz spectrum licenses acquired in March 2001 and the balance for site deployment costs, a deposit on the Ericsson network contract and other business development costs. The 3G business remains well on track for a commercial launch in late 2002/early 2003.


Media Inquiries: Marie Kelly, Director of Public Affairs, 9964 4831
Investor and Analyst Inquiries: Karen Mazor, Investor Relations Manager, 9964 4885