CEO´s review has been published in DNA's Business review for January-March 2021 on 4 May 2021
DNA’s business development remained steady in the first quarter of 2021. Our total revenues grew 3% and amounted to EUR 236 million (230). Our mobile revenues were also up, by 1%, and amounted to EUR 140 million (138). DNA’s EBITDA developed strongly in the first quarter, growing 14% to EUR 93 million (82), and our operating profit improved by 7% and was EUR 42 million (40).
Our mobile communication subscription base decreased by 7,000 from the reference period, again exclusively due to the decrease in prepaid subscriptions. On the other hand, the number of contract subscriptions increased by 22,000. At the same time, our average revenue per user (ARPU) increased 1.5% and was EUR 17.0 (16.7).
The number of fixed subscriptions was up by 27,000, in particular due to the increase of 40,000 broadband subscriptions. As a result, DNA became the number one in the fixed broadband market measured by the number of customers*. The achievement is the result of long-term work that DNA has done for years to increase market share and improve the customer experience.
The corona pandemic has passed the one-year milestone, and we at DNA have seen an exceptional growth of data traffic. The same is happening all over the world; according to the report published by the international research company Tefficient in April, global mobile data traffic grew 38% in 2020. As per the same report, at 34.8 gigabytes per month, DNA’s customers had the highest mobile data usage per subscription in Europe.
The exponential growth in mobile data volumes demonstrates the clear need for new 5G technologies. It would be difficult to meet the needs of growing demand with 4G networks alone, whereas the use of 5G networks allows us to multiply the capacity of our mobile network. DNA’s 5G network construction has progressed rapidly, and our 5G network reached more than 2 million people at the end of the first quarter. In March, Suomen Yhteisverkko Oy (Finnish Shared Network), which is jointly owned by DNA and Telia, began the construction of a new 5G network in Northern and Eastern Finland in cooperation with Nokia.
The sales of 5G subscriptions continued briskly, and two thirds of the phones in DNA’s TOP 15 list of most popular phones were 5G models. Installations of DNA’s 5G Fixed Wireless Access service have also continued at a good pace, and an increasing number of households is interested in the service.
At the end of the first quarter, more than 95% of DNA’s personnel continued to work remotely. According to our personnel survey, remote working has gone smoothly throughout the pandemic, and DNA has placed special emphasis on immediately addressing any concerns over employee well-being.
*) Source: Number of subscriptions reported by the largest broadband operators in their interim reports Q1/2021 (DNA: 591,000, Elisa 567,000 and Telia 470,000).