By Adria Calatayud
Telia Co. AB said Friday that it swung to a net loss for the second quarter of 2020, hit by the coronavirus pandemic and a write-down from the sale of its stake in Turkcell Holding, but beat expectations for sales and adjusted earnings.
The Swedish telecommunications company said its TV and media operations had a challenging quarter mainly due to the pandemic. It expects to continue to experience coronavirus impacts in the second half of the year. This, combined with tougher year-earlier comparatives, led the company to guide for a second-half adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization result similar to that of the first half.
For the April-June quarter, Telia reported a net loss of 2.05 billion Swedish kronor ($225.6 million) compared with net profit of SEK1.60 billion in the year-earlier period. This included an impairment charge of SEK3.49 billion following the company's recent exit from Turkey.
Sales rose 2.7% to SEK21.77 billion, the company said.
Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization--the company's preferred metric, which strips out exceptional and other one-off items--increased 3.6% to SEK7.74 billion, Telia said.
Analysts polled by FactSet had forecast an adjusted Ebitda of SEK7.10 billion on sales of SEK21.52 billion.
The company reiterated its previous guidance for operational free cash flow to be between SEK9.5 billion and SEK10.5 billion.
Telia President and Chief Executive Allison Kirkby said management will go through the cost base forensically to seek further efficiencies, apply a rigorous approach to capital allocation and invest further where this enhances customer proposition and reach.
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