Proximus expects higher profit in 2024, driven by international operations

Proximus expects higher profit in 2024, driven by international operations

Proximus expects a higher percentage of its gross operating profit this year. The previously expected one percent will double to two percent, according to the telecom provider. International activities outside European (home) markets would be beneficial. However, the Belgian state-owned telecom provider’s debt continues to increase.

In a recent statement to investors, the Belgian telecom provider presented more favourable expectations for its international activities. These activities should grow gross operating profit by two percent for this year. Earlier, Proximus predicted a one percent increase for 2024.

This growth should be driven by the international activities that telecom providers are increasingly developing. This is to compensate for the saturation of its home markets in the Benelux and to pay for investments in fibre optics.

Acquisition of Route Mobile

Proximus is expanding outside these markets with the international brands BICS and Telesign. These mainly focus on digital communication solutions for companies, such as sending customer messages and checking digital identity. Recently, India’s Route Mobile was added to the international portfolio.

In 2023, these international activities accounted for €1.9 million in revenue and a gross operating profit of €180 million. Proximus expects more revenue and sees much growth potential around the Route Mobile acquisition. Gross operating profit synergies were initially expected to be around 90 million euros, but this has been raised to 100 million euros.

In addition, by 2026, Proximus expects to generate even more revenue from all of its international operations, the combination of BICS, Telesign and Route Mobile. These revenues will rise to between 2 and 2.5 billion euros.

More debt

Despite all the positive expectations for international growth and revenues, Proximus’ debt burden continues to increase. This is due to the issuance of a bond, which raised capital for the purchase of Route Mobile.

The telecom provider expects net debt to be between 2.9 and 3 times gross operating profit this year. This is more than the 2.7 figure that Proximus previously considered.