In CHF million, except where indicated   1.1.–30.9.2017   1.1.–30.9.2016   Change
Net revenue   8,604   8,643   –0.5%
Operating income before depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA)   3,354   3,307   1.4%
EBITDA as % of net revenue   39.0   38.3    
Operating income (EBIT)   1,766   1,691   4.4%
Net income   1,269   1,197   6.0%
Earnings per share (in CHF)   24.52   23.15   5.9%
Capital expenditure   1,587   1,768   –10.2%
Operating free cash flow   1,672   1,404   19.1%
Net debt at end of period   7,868   8,310   –5.3%
Full-time equivalent employees at end of period   20,704   21,292   –2.8%

In the first nine months of 2017, Swisscom’s net revenue fell by CHF 39 million or 0.5% to CHF 8,604 million. Revenue in the Swiss core business decreased by CHF 153 million or 2.2% as a result of the downward trend in fixed-line telephony, high price pressure and increasing market saturation. Revenue from telecommunications services declined by CHF 130 million or 2.6% in the first nine months of the year. This trend was reinforced in the third quarter of 2017 with a decline of CHF 54 million or 3.2%, primarily due to increased promotions and decreasing roaming revenue. Conversely, revenue from growth areas grew, particularly in the solutions business for corporate customers (+0.9%). Revenue at Italian subsidiary Fastweb rose by EUR 96 million or 7.3% to EUR 1,414 million, due to customer growth and higher wholesale revenue.

Swisscom’s operating income before depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) increased by CHF 47 million or 1.4% to CHF 3,354 million. This increase is primarily attributable to higher EBITDA at Fastweb, which rose by EUR 83 million or 16.9% to EUR 573 million, and includes one-off income from legal disputes amounting to EUR 95 million (prior year: EUR 55 million). Adjusted for this income, Fastweb EBITDA increased by EUR 43 million or 9.9%. EBITDA in the Swiss core business fell by CHF 36 million or 1.3%, with a large proportion of the drop in revenue offset by active cost management. Swisscom’s operating income (EBIT) increased by CHF 75 million or 4.4% to CHF 1,766 million due to higher EBITDA and lower depreciation and amortisation. As a result of the increase in operating income, net income rose by CHF 72 million or 6.0% to CHF 1,269 million.

Swisscom’s capital expenditure fell by CHF 181 million or 10.2% to CHF 1,587 million. In Switzerland, it declined as a result of delays in network expansion by CHF 195 million or 15.1% to CHF 1,097 million. Progress continues to be made on expanding the broadband network. At the end of September 2017, Swisscom had connected some 3.8 million households and businesses with ultra-fast broadband (with speeds of more than 50 Mbps), around 2.3 million of which benefit from speeds of more than 100 Mbps. Capital expenditure at Fastweb remained at a high level, totalling EUR 441 million. The increase of 2.6% is mainly attributable to higher customer-driven investment.

Operating free cash flow rose by CHF 268 million or 19.1% to CHF 1,672 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 7,868 million, net debt is CHF 442 million or 5.3% lower compared with a year ago.

Headcount decreased year-on-year by 588 FTEs or 2.8% to 20,704 FTEs. In comparison with the previous year, headcount in Switzerland fell by 674 FTEs or 3.6% to 17,877 FTEs as a result of the declining core business. In Switzerland, the reduction in the first nine months of 2017 totalled 495 FTEs (–2.7%). More than three-quarters of the reduction was offset by natural fluctuation and vacancy management.

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 4.3 bil­lion and capital expenditure in the region of CHF 2.4 bil­lion. Subject to achieving its targets, Swisscom will propose an unchanged dividend of CHF 22 per share for the 2017 financial year at the 2018 Annual General Meeting.