A busy six months for Cable & Wireless, during which it became a major American Internet service provider, and gained greater control of its Australian subsidiary, resulted in a slight increase in profit.
But the UK based operator, which generates around 37 per cent of revenue from its business in Hong Kong, said it is still suffering the effects of the Asian economic crisis.
Cable & Wireless reported a one per cent rise in pre-tax profit, before charges, on Wednesday, for the six months ended 30 September. Profit reached #1.12 billion during the period, up from #1.11 billion a year earlier.
Turnover for the Cable & Wireless group, and its share of joint ventures, rose 11 per cent during the period to #4.3 billion, compared with #3.9 billion a year earlier.
Asia's economic crisis is still impacting Cable & Wireless' revenue, despite the company rebalancing away from dependence on revenues from Hong Kong, according to the company's chief executive Richard Brown.
"Earnings are being impacted by the difficult trading conditions in Hong Kong. However, the overall prospects for the group remain encouraging," said Brown in a statement. Revenues from business in Hong Kong represent around 37 per cent of C&W's total revenues, more than from the UK.
The telco this week launched Cable & Wireless Internet Xperience (see Newswire 10 November), the new face for the ISP business it purchased from MCI for $1.7 billion in September. The business is expected to generate revenues of over $400 million a year.
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