Kuwait's Zain posts flat earnings

Foreign currency conversions, mainly in Sudan, cost the company

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Zain, Kuwait's biggest telecom operator by subscribers, reported flat second-quarter profits on Sunday.

The former monopoly, which operates in eight countries in the Middle East and Africa, made a net profit of 44 million Kuwaiti dinars (Dh535.1m) in the three months to June 30, it said. That compared with a profit of 44.7m dinars in the year period last year.

EFG Hermes had forecast a net profit of 39.8m dinars, while SICO Bahrain forecast a net profit of 36.7m dinars.

Zain said foreign currency conversions, mainly in Sudan, had cost the company US$58m in the first six months of 2017.

Second-quarter revenue was 261m dinars, down from 274.9m dinars a year ago.

In Kuwait, Zain competitors include Viva, an affiliate of Saudi Telecom Co.

Zain said in December it was in talks to sell its mobile transmitter towers to a consortium comprised of TASC SAL and ACWA Holding.

* Reuters