NBN Co losses shrink as revenue climbs

NBN Co losses shrink as revenue climbs

Total revenue grew 36 per cent to $3.8 billion, a rise from $2.8 billion a year ago.

NBN Co CEO Stephen Rue

NBN Co CEO Stephen Rue

Credit: NBN Co

NBN Co has rebounded from a disappointing year to see its earnings before tax loss improve by 50 per cent to $648 million, in comparison to $1.29 billion loss last year. 

For the year ending 30 June 2020, total revenue grew 36 per cent to $3.8 billion, a  rise from $2.8 billion, while Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) grew from $44 to $45 in the 12 month period.

According to NBN Co, 69 per cent of residential and business customers were connected to NBN wholesale speed tiers of 50 Mbps and above, and approximately 80 per cent of new customers were continuing to sign up to speeds of 50 Mbps and above, which drove the increase in residential ARPU.

NBN Co forecasts that approximately 8.2 million premises will be connected to the network by 30 June 2021.

Meanwhile, the broadband builder's business arm's revenue increased by 40 per cent to $666 million.

“We enter FY21 in a strong financial position and with good momentum in both the residential and business markets,” NBN Co CEO, Stephen Rue said.

 “Following the completion of the initial network build, we are focused on our future as a customer-led service delivery organisation as we work to unlock and enable the economic and social benefits that fast broadband can deliver. 

“This will require us to sharpen our efforts in areas such as customer experience and innovation, as well as continuing to simplify our relationship with internet providers so we can provide a more seamless experience to customers.”

As the impact of the COVID-19 crisis became apparent in March, NBN Co offered pricing relief for up to 40 per cent additional CVC capacity to participating internet retailers, which has seen the organisation forgo revenue of more than $80 million in CVC capacity charges, Rue said. 

“This pricing relief for up to 40 per cent additional Connectivity Virtual Circuit (CVC) capacity was only ever intended as a short-term measure," he explained.

"However, we have maintained this moratorium on additional wholesale data charges for seven months to give internet retailers the time and financial relief they needed to adapt to their customers’ changing data demands."

“As part of our prior commitment in 2019 to work more closely with the industry, we also introduced greater wholesale bundle discounts, which included significant annual increases in data capacity for most wholesale speed tiers and, in support of the economics for Retail Service Providers, we changed the procurement model to allow them to purchase data capacity at a national aggregate level."

During FY20, NBN Co paid about $2.4 billion in subscriber costs to Telstra and Optus, which are expected to significantly reduce from FY21 with payments totalling approximately $1.5 billion due over FY21-24.

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