Business in Brief: Israel’s Second-largest Mobile Phone Operator Reports 52% Drop in Quarterly Profit

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FILE PHOTO: The logo of Partner, an Israeli communication firm, is seen on their headquarters in Rosh Ha'ayin.
FILE PHOTO: The logo of Partner, an Israeli communication firm, is seen on their headquarters in Rosh Ha'ayin.Credit: AMIR COHEN / REUTERS

Partner Communications Q3 profit down

Partner Communications, Israel’s second-largest mobile phone operator, reported on Wednesday a 52% drop in quarterly profit as it continues to invest heavily in the deployment of a fiber optics network and its TV service. Partner earned 26 million shekels ($6.97 million) in the third quarter, down from 54 million a year earlier. Revenue slipped to 822 million shekels from 826 million, with its mobile subscriber base falling by 1% to 2.65 million. According to a Reuters poll of analysts, Partner was forecast to earn 24.7 million shekels on revenue of 821 million shekels. Partner’s revenue and profit have plunged in the wake of a 2012 reform that opened up the mobile market to new players, sharply reducing prices. It is seeking new revenue streams and investing to become an integrated multi-service telecoms group. The company said 118,000 households had connected to its internet-based TV service. Its fiber optics infrastructure now reaches more than 250,000 households. (Reuters)

Azrieli Group Q3 net profit edges up

Real estate developer Azrieli Group reported Wednesday third-quarter net profit of 264 million shekels ($71 million), up from 263 million shekels a year earlier. Excluding the effect of property revaluations, adjusted profit was up 8% to 241 million shekels. Azrieli, which built Tel Aviv’s Azrieli office and shopping complex, said net operating income, which reflects the group’s core business, rose 11% to 386 million. Occupancy rates at its shopping malls stood at 98%. (Reuters)

FIBI Q3 profit up, declares dividend

First International Bank of Israel, the country’s fifth-largest bank by assets, on Wednesday reported a 4.4% growth in third-quarter net profit and said it would pay a 100 million shekel dividend. FIBI posted quarterly net profit of 212 million shekels ($57 million), compared with 203 million a year earlier. It was forecast to earn 220 million shekels in a Reuters poll of analysts. Excluding one-time items, FIBI reported net profit of 178 million shekels versus 171 million in the same period last year. Net interest income rose to 634 million shekels from 565 million a year earlier while expenses from credit losses were up to 49 million shekels from 9 million. (Reuters)