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SEOUL, Aug. 8 (Yonhap) — SK Telecom Co., South Korea’s biggest wireless carrier, reported on Tuesday that its second-quarter net profit had grown by 35 percent year-over-year, mainly caused by a single-time gain from its investment in a U.S mobility company.
Net income totaled 347.8 billion won (US$265.8 million) in the April-June period, up 34.8 percent from the prior year, the carrier said in a regulatory filing, due to a forward trading profit related to its investment in Joby Aviation, a California-based company developing electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft. SK Telecom invested US$100 million to acquire an approximately 2 percent stake in the company in June.
It posted 463.4 billion won in operating profit for the quarter ending in June, compared with 459.6 billion won a year ago, thanks to rising business-to-business sales on the back of higher data center utilization rates of SK Broadband.
The earnings beat market expectations. The average estimate of net profit by analysts stood at 290.3 billion won, according to a survey by Yonhap Infomax, the financial data firm of Yonhap News Agency.
The company saw its 5G service subscribers reach 14.7 million, accounting for 63 percent of its total mobile handset subscriptions.
Revenue rose 0.4 percent to 4.3 trillion won.
The continued scale-up of data centers, with the opening of a new one in Bundang, south of Seoul, and a rise in utilization rates of such centers, helped SK Telecom’s Enterprise sales grow 9.2 percent on-year to 407.1 billion won for the second quarter.
Sales related to data centers and cloud services increased 33.2 percent and 67.7 percent, respectively.
The company’s media business, which includes B tv, SK Stoa and TEAM Studio, posted 386.5 billion won in sales, up 1.2 percent from a year earlier.
The company said efforts were underway to strengthen the media value chain based on its fixed and mobile subscriber base.
SK Telecom shares ended down 0.64 percent at 46,500 won on the Seoul bourse Tuesday, versus the wider market’s 0.26 percent decrease.