BT Group unveils rise in annual and fourth quarter profits

BT Group's annual pre-tax profit was up 11 per cent on the previous year as the telecoms company kept a tight rein on costs.

BT Group's annual pre-tax profit was up 11 per cent on the previous year as the telecoms company kept a tight rein on costs.

The company, which Thursday revealed it would offer free sports channels to broadband customers, saw profit for the 12 months to end of March come to £2.6bn despite a 5.0% year-on-year fall in revenue to £18.2bn.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) climbed 2.0% to £6.1bn and earnings per share increased 12% to 26.6p.

In the first three months of the year, pre-tax profit jumped 21% to £833m while revenue dropped 2.0% to £4.7bn. EBITDA grew 4.0% to £1.6bn and earnings per share rose 22% to 8.3p.

Chief Executive, Ian Livingston, said the company was working to improve its long-term profitability.

"In an environment where it is easier to focus only on the short-term, we are investing in our future and delivering growth in profits and dividends," he said.

In an effort to steal customers away from competitors, the group is offering its sports channels, BT Sport 1, BT Sport 2 and ESPN, free to any BT broadband consumer.

The channels will broadcast live and exclusive football matches from multiple leagues along with FA Cup ties, the UEFA Europa League, Scottish Premier League and WTA women's tennis.

"We are driving fibre across the UK, launching high quality sports channels, investing in the high-growth regions of the world and will use our wi-fi capabilities and 4G spectrum to make sure our customers will be the best connected," Livingston added.

"We have created around 3,000 new jobs in the UK over the last year to support these investments."

Net debt at the end of the financial year came to £7.7bn, a reduction of £1.2bn compared to last year, despite the increase in investments.

The company proposed a full-year dividend of 9.5p, a 14% rise on the previous year.

RD

Recommended

The Burberry share price looks like a good bet
Trading

The Burberry share price looks like a good bet

The Burberry share price could be on the verge of a major upswing as the firm’s profits return to growth.
5 Oct 2022
3 emerging market dividend stocks to buy now
Share tips

3 emerging market dividend stocks to buy now

Professional investor Omar Negyal of the JPMorgan Global Emerging Markets Income Trust picks three of his favourite emerging market stocks for income …
4 Oct 2022
Share tips of the week – 30 September
Share tips

Share tips of the week – 30 September

MoneyWeek’s comprehensive guide to the best of this week’s share tips from the rest of the UK's financial pages.
30 Sep 2022
The best British tech stocks from a thriving sector
Share tips

The best British tech stocks from a thriving sector

Move over, Silicon Valley. Over the past two decades the UK has become one of the main global hubs for tech start-ups. Matthew Partridge explains why,…
29 Sep 2022

Most Popular

Should you take a 25% tax-free pension lump sum in instalments?
Pensions

Should you take a 25% tax-free pension lump sum in instalments?

Taking out a 25% tax-free lump sum sounds appealing but it might not be the best way to manage your pension
30 Sep 2022
Mortgage early repayment charges: are they worth the cost?
Mortgages

Mortgage early repayment charges: are they worth the cost?

With interest rates set to rise further in the months ahead, is it worth swallowing early repayment charges to refinance your mortgage today?
4 Oct 2022
Why the Bank of England intervened in the bond market
Government bonds

Why the Bank of England intervened in the bond market

A sudden crisis for pension funds exposed to rapidly rising bond yields meant the Bank of England had to act. Cris Sholto Heaton looks at the lessons …
30 Sep 2022