Singapore’s fastest residential fibre broadband service 10Gbps XGPON
Demonstrated Southeast Asia’s fastest combined speeds in 4.5G speed trial
Singapore’s 1st WiFi-On-The-Go service trials
Singapore’s 1st nationwide commercial narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) network
Singapore’s 1st nationwide HetNet
M1 is Singapore’s most vibrant and dynamic communications company, providing mobile and fixed services to more than two million customers. Since the launch of commercial services in 1997, M1 has achieved many firsts, including the first operator to offer nationwide 4G service, as well as ultra-high-speed fixed broadband, fixed voice and other services on the Next Generation Nationwide Broadband Network (NGNBN). With a continual focus on network quality, customer service, value and innovation, M1’s mission is to link anyone and anything; anytime, anywhere.
The Company holds Facilities-Based Operator and Services-Based Operator licences issued by the Infocommunications Media Development Authority of Singapore (IMDA), for the provision of telecommunication systems and services. M1 also has a Telecommunication Dealer’s Class Licence, for the import and sale of telecommunication equipment.
M1 operates nationwide 4G LTE Advanced and 3G/HSPA networks, capable of download speeds of up to 300Mbps. Through these networks, it provides customers with a wide range of data, voice and value added postpaid and prepaid mobile services. To cater to its customers’ varied needs, M1 offers service plans with a choice of data and voice bundles that they can take up, with or without a device.
M1 makes available to its mobile and fixed line customers International Direct Dial (IDD) services, as well as an International Calling Card service. M1 also trades wholesale voice minutes with other international and local service providers and provides dark fibre services to carriers and data centres. Since September 2010, M1 has made available a range of residential fibre broadband services with speeds of up to 10Gbps, including fixed voice and other value-added services. The Company offers an extensive suite of mobile and fixed services to the corporate segment.
In 2016, the postpaid mobile segment remains the key contributor to M1’s revenue, comprising 61.8% of its total mobile customer base as at end 2016 and 89.0% of revenue. During the year, M1 added 52,000 postpaid customers to bring its postpaid base to 1,247,000.
Driven by faster networks and devices, mobile data usage grew to an average data usage per smartphone customer of 3.6GB per month in the fourth quarter of 2016, up from 3.3GB per month a year ago.
Throughout 2016, M1 continued to enhance and expand its products and services. It launched new Upsized Data bundles to cater to an increasing data usage trend among customers, as well as M1 Entertainment Data which enables customers to enjoy unlimited local access to OTT video and music services.
Within the prepaid mobile segment, the Company grew its customer base by 39,000 to 772,000, driven by various marketing campaigns, promotions and new offerings. Prepaid customers were able to use their data bundles in Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. M1 also launched a new IDD prefix, which offered customers low flat rates on calls to India, Bangladesh, China, Myanmar, Philippines and Indonesia.
In the fixed services segment, the Company added 32,000 customers to bring its fibre customer base to 160,000, driven by its competitive service plans, tactical promotions and new complementary services such as the M1 Fibre Sports Bundle. M1 also launched Singapore’s fastest residential fibre broadband service, the 10-Gigabit Passive Optical Network (10Gbps XGPON) fibre service in 2016.
Within the corporate segment, M1 was appointed by Ascendas-Singbridge for Singapore’s largest fibre upgrading project to install and enhance telecommunication and fibre infrastructure at 70 Ascendas-Singbridge commercial buildings. The first completed site situated along Singapore Science Park was announced in November 2016.
Throughout 2016, the Company made available a range of new products and services within both the residential and corporate segments. This included the next generation Hosted Unified Communications (UC) solution offering integrated modern business tools, Smart Activity Monitoring Service to support vulnerable senior citizens, contactless transit payments via a partnership with EZ-Link Pte Ltd, an affordably priced SOHO Fibre Broadband plan, a 1Gbps M1 Fibre Sports Bundle and the Cyber Security Solutions Suite offering a comprehensive suite of enterprise-grade managed cybersecurity solutions.
To augment its growth, M1’s 13 shop outlets continued to provide customers with convenient access to its products and services while its e-Shop recorded an increase in online transactions.
New brand campaigns were rolled out during the year which increased brand awareness and perception in the marketplace. M1 also continued to strengthen customer experience across all touch points, such as the enhanced My M1 app which provides customers near real-time access to their voice, messaging and data usage information. As a result of its sustained efforts to better serve its customers, the Company topped the Customer Satisfaction Index of Singapore for 2016 in the residential broadband segment.
Since inception, M1 has invested more than SGD1.9 billion into its fixed and mobile networks. Key initiatives in 2016 include a 4.5G speed trial which demonstrated Southeast Asia’s fastest combined upload and download speeds, launching Singapore’s first WiFi-On-The-Go service on selected SMRT vehicles as part of the national Heterogeneous Network (HetNet) trials, Singapore’s first nationwide commercial narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) network deployment, and the roll out of Singapore’s first nationwide HetNet which is an integral part of M1’s 5G network roadmap.
In 2016, M1’s operating revenue decreased 8.3% Year on Year (YoY) to SGD1,060.9 million due to lower handset sales. Service revenue decreased 2.0% to SGD805.5 million, as a result of lower international call services and roaming revenues. Mobile data revenue increased 7.7 percentage points YoY to 54.0% of service revenue.
NPAT decreased 16.1% YoY to SGD149.7 million, due to lower international call and roaming revenues, higher handset subsidy, as well as higher depreciation and amortisation expenses. NPAT margin on service revenue closed 3.1 percentage points lower at 18.6%. Free cash flow increased 22.6% to SGD129.6 million and net debt-to-EBITDA remained healthy at 1.2 times.
Market conditions will remain challenging in 2017. Traditional telecommunications will continue to be impacted by OTT services while global economic conditions remain uncertain. The Company expects competition within the telecommunications sector to remain intense, ahead of the entry of a fourth mobile network operator in Singapore in 2018.
In spite of these challenges, consumers and businesses alike appreciate the benefits of connectivity and this will drive continued growth in mobile data and fixed services through 2017. M1 is also seeing emerging opportunities in areas such as Internet of Things (IoT), Smart Cities and Data Analytics, and these will grow as the technologies and business models that underpin them gain greater traction.
As a forward looking company, M1 has been investing and innovating in anticipation of these developments by strengthening its core connectivity infrastructure and services, building its digital capabilities, and enhancing its operational structure. Through these efforts, M1 is well on its way to becoming Singapore’s Smart Communications Provider of choice, with products and services that are relevant and serve present, as well as future customers’ needs.
1 & 2 EBIDTA Margin and PAT is derived as a percentage of service revenue