CenterTelecom posts 250% y-o-y rise in 9M06 RAS net profit

MOSCOW, October 31 (RIA Novosti) - CenterTelecom [RTS: ESMO], an inter-regional telecom provider, said Tuesday its net profit calculated to Russian Accounting Standards increased 250% year-on-year in January-September to 1.9 billion rubles ($72 million).

The largest fixed-line communications operator in Russia's Central Federal District said in a news release that the high figure was due to an increase in operating profit, as well as recovery of bad debt provision resulting from the repayment of certain receivables from socially important customers by the Ministry of Finance.

The company's revenue in January-September climbed 2.4% year-on-year to 20.5 billon rubles ($767 million).

This trend is due primarily by an increase in regulated tariffs in the fourth quarter of 2005, the introduction of a new system of interaction between operators as of 1 January 2006, the introduction of the "calling party pays" concept as of 1 July 2006, and growing sales of value-added telecom services, the company said.

CenterTelecom said its EBITDA gained 39.2% to 7.4 billion ($275 million) in the reporting period.

CenterTelecom, which is part of Svyazinvest state telecoms holding, had charter capital of 6.31 billion rubles (about $234 million) as of July 1, 2006.

The company's shares are listed on the RTS and MICEX, and its Level-1 American Depositary Receipts are traded on the U.S. over-the-counter market and the Berlin and Frankfurt stock exchanges.

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