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Three UK and Ireland has announced revenue of just over £700m for the six-month period ended 30 June 2006, up 16 per cent on the preceding half year.

The mobile operator also said it had a total of 3,750,000 customers as of 23 August 2006, a rise of four per cent compared to the prior six month period.

Three reported that the yearly Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) was up 20 per cent to £41.51 with non-voice ARPU accounting for 25 per cent or £10.16 per active user.

There was no breakdown of figures for Ireland in the company's financial report although the statement said that "Three Ireland is at a relatively early stage of growth and continued to grow with good operating and financial performance".

The Three Group as a whole recorded revenues for the six-month period of HK$23,509m, up 36 per cent on the preceding half year.

ARPU on a trailing 12-month ARPU basis increased from €42.20 at the end of last year to €44.66 at the end of June 2006, led by growth in the UK's postpaid customer base.

Average non-voice ARPU also grew for the Three Group as a whole, both in value, from €10.47 at the end of last year to €12.54 at the end of June 2006, and as a percentage of total ARPU, from 25 per cent to 28 per cent.

The group which holds 3G licences in 10 countries also said that its 3G customer base currently totals over 13.5m worldwide, a rise of 16 per cent.

However, while the improved performance of Three Group will no doubt please its parent company Hutchison Whampoa, the group is still running at a loss, although the losses have narrowed by 40 per cent, down HK$8bn to current losses of HK$12bn.

Hutchison Whampoa meanwhile announced that its net profit doubled in the first six months of the year, compared to the same period in 2005.

The company said that net profit to the end of June reached HK$18.8bn compared to HK$9.4bn a year earlier. Earnings per share doubled to HK$4.41 during the half year.

Copyright © 2006, ENN

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