Swisscom rings up higher profits and sales

Swisscom, Switzerland’s leading telecom company, on Thursday announced a six percent rise in net profits to 1.3 billion francs ($1.35 billion) for the first nine months of 2014 over the same period last year.

Swisscom rings up higher profits and sales
Photo: Swisscom

The company said revenues increased by two percent to 8.6 billion francs.

Swisscom said the high level of price erosion in its core Swiss business was offset by growth.

For example, Swisscom TV connections jumped by more than 19 percent to more than 1.1 million, while revenue from bundled contracts climbed by more than 24 percent to 1.4 billion francs.

The number of mobile customers increased 2.4 percent to around 6.5 million, including two million subscribed to the Natel Infinity (unlimited usage) package.

With more than 21,000 employees, Swisscom boosted its capital expenditures in the nine-month period by almost eight percent to more than 1.7 billion francs, 1.2 billion francs of which was in Switzerland.

The company said it is continuing to expand its 4G/LTE network and more than 94 percent of Swiss customers are currently able to access the “latest generation” mobile network, a share that is expected to rise to 99 percent by 2016.

It expects sales for the year to reach 11.5 billion francs with total investments reaching 2.4 billion francs.

If the company reaches its objectives, Swisscom said it expects to pay a dividend of 22 francs per share for 2014. 

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Swisscom to start charging 2.90 francs for paper bills

Swiss telecommunications giant Swisscom is set to introduce new fees for customers who wish to receive a simple, non-itemized hard copy of their latest bill.

Swisscom to start charging 2.90 francs for paper bills
Swisscom has justified the new charges by saying they are standard industry practice. Photo: AFP

Until now, customers have been able to receive one of these basic bills for free, but as of October 1st, a fee of 2.90 Swiss francs (around €2.60) will apply.

At the same time, the current fee of 1.50 francs for receipt of a detailed bill will rise to 2.90 francs.

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Meanwhile, people wishing to pay their bills over the counter at a post office will have to shell out 3.90 francs as of October 1st.

Customers affected by the changes will be notified on all their bills before the new charges come in.

Holders of basic service products including Swisscom Line Basic and Swisscom Internet Basic will be exempt from the new charges.

In a statement on the new fees on its website, Swisscom said that printed bills cost the company millions every year and that these costs should not be passed on to all customers.

The same applied to costs associated with over-the-counter services at post offices, the company said.

Swisscom also justified the changes by stating these were now standard industry practice.

Rival provider UPC charges 3 francs for sending out paper bills and up to 7.50 francs for paying bills at the post office. Salt charges 2 francs a month for sending out basic bills and 5 francs a month for detailed bills. Salt also charges 3.95 francs to customers who want to pay their bills at the post office.

For Sunrise, paper bills cost 3 francs for the basic version and 4 francs for a detailed version. Payment with a so-called red slip costs 5 francs whether this is done online or in a post office.

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