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Summary

In CHF million, except where indicated   31.3.2017   31.3.2016   Change
Net revenue   2,831   2,885   –1.9%
Operating income before depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA)   1,073   1,081   –0.7%
EBITDA as % of net revenue   37.9   37.5    
Operating income (EBIT)   550   535   2.8%
Net income   373   364   2.5%
Earnings per share (in CHF)   7.20   7.05   2.1%
Capital expenditure   529   596   –11.2%
Operating free cash flow   463   184   151.6%
Net debt at end of period   7,689   8,108   –5.2%
Full-time equivalent employees at end of period   21,079   21,645   –2.6%

In the first quarter of 2017, Swisscom’s net revenue fell by CHF 54 million or 1.9% to CHF 2,831 million. Revenue in the Swiss core business decreased by CHF 59 million or 2.6% mainly as a result of sustained competitive pressure. Revenue from telecommunications services fell by CHF 37 million or 2.2%, with half of this reduction due to the declining subscriber base in the fixed-line telephony business and the other half to price cuts, including roaming fees, and a drop-off in the Enterprise Customers segment. As a result of customer growth, Italian subsidiary Fastweb’s revenue was EUR 13 million or 3.0% higher at EUR 453 million. The number of subscribers to Fastweb’s broadband business grew by 159,000 or 7.1% year-on-year to 2.4 million.

Swisscom’s operating income before depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) decreased by CHF 8 million or 0.7% to CHF 1,073 million. EBITDA in the Swiss core business fell by CHF 26 million or 2.7%, with a large proportion of the drop in revenue offset by active cost management. At Fastweb, EBITDA rose by EUR 14 million or 10.7%, which is the result of higher revenue and improved regulatory conditions. Swisscom’s operating income (EBIT) increased by CHF 15 million or 2.8% to CHF 550 million due to lower depreciation and amortisation. Net income increased year-on-year by CHF 9 million or 2.5% to CHF 373 million.

Swisscom’s capital expenditure fell by CHF 67 million or 11.2% to CHF 529 million. In Switzerland, it declined primarily as a result of delayed investments at Swisscom Switzerland by CHF 63 million or 14.8% to CHF 362 million. Nevertheless, progress continues to be made on expanding the broadband network. At the end of March 2017, over 2.6 million lines in Switzerland featured the latest fibre-optic technology. In total, Swisscom has connected over 3.6 million homes and offices with ultra-fast broadband (with speeds of more than 50 Mbps). Capital expenditure at Fastweb remained at a similarly high level to the previous year, totalling EUR 155 million.

Operating free cash flow rose by CHF 279 million to CHF 463 million. In the previous year, cash flow was affected by the payment of the penalty of CHF 186 million for the ongoing Competition Commission proceedings regarding broadband services. At CHF 7,689 million, net debt is CHF 419 million or 5.2% lower compared to the previous year.

Headcount decreased year-on-year by 566 FTEs or 2.6% to 21,079 FTEs. In comparison with the previous year, headcount in Switzerland fell by 680 FTEs or 3.6% to 18,280 FTEs as a result of the declining core business. Around half of the reduction was offset by natural fluctuation and vacancy management. In Switzerland, the reduction in the first quarter of 2017 totalled 92 FTEs.

The financial outlook for 2017 remains unchanged. Swisscom expects to close the financial year with net revenue of around CHF 11.6 bil­lion, EBITDA of around CHF 4.2 bil­lion and capital expenditure in the region of CHF 2.4 bil­lion. Subject to achieving its targets, Swisscom will propose payment of an unchanged, attractive dividend of CHF 22 per share for the 2017 financial year at the 2018 Annual General Meeting.