Business Irish

Wednesday 18 September 2019

Cutting €69m overheads helps boost earnings at Eir

Developing: Eir spent nearly a quarter of revenue on extensive network investment, says CEO Carolan Lennon
Developing: Eir spent nearly a quarter of revenue on extensive network investment, says CEO Carolan Lennon
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Cost-cutting of €69m last year helped boost earnings at Eir.

The group, which reduced overheads by 14pc in the 12 months to 30 June, reported a 10pc increase in earnings to €578m, despite a fall in sales.

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Over the past two years Eir, which was acquired by French billionaire Xavier Niel in 2017, has recognised €73m in restructuring costs.

Job cuts by the company in April last year helped reduce the group's total workforce to 4,300 at June 30, down from 5,636 a year earlier. This includes outsourced and contract staff.

However, the group actually increased its full-time equivalent staff by 25pc to 3,501, driven by insourcing customer care and sales functions.

"Under new ownership, we continue to maintain our focus on cost transformation and intend to achieve an efficient cost base that is suitable for our operations and competitive in comparison to other industry participants," Eir said.

"We believe this can be achieved through simplification and digitalisation of our business, operations and processes, which in turn will enable faster decision-making and better communication, without compromising our ambitions to be a leader in customer experience."

Elsewhere, revenue at the telecoms group declined by 2pc to €1.2bn, while Eir had cash on its balance sheet of €260m at June 30, up 28pc year on year.

Eir broadband customers increased to 944,000, up 2pc year on year. It had 78,000 Vision customers, an increase of 3,000, while the number of Eir Sport users increased by 50,000 to 305,000.

However, its revenue from mobile services fell 2pc to €331m.

Carolan Lennon, Eir CEO, said: "This year was one of substantial developments in our business as our ebitda grew 10pc, even as we continued to deliver our essential role as the biggest investor in telecoms infrastructure in Ireland, spending nearly a quarter of our revenue on extensive network investment."

Irish Independent

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