Kogan Mobile climbs toward AU$3.5m quarterly profit

Kogan Mobile gross profit is rising to the AU$3.5m-per-quarter mark, with the telco continuing to add customers.
Written by Corinne Reichert, Contributor

Kogan Mobile has said it is "one of the fastest-growing telcos in Australian history", with its gross profit climbing toward the AU$3.5 million mark as the provider continues adding customers.

The company had made AU$3.6 million revenue from Kogan Mobile throughout the entirety of FY17.

Providing a cash update on Monday morning, Australian online retailer Kogan.com reported AU$108 million in total receipts from customers in the quarter to March 31, with the company saying it has seen revenue growth of 46 percent year on year. In the nine months to March 31, it made AU$313 million in receipts from customers.

Active Kogan.com customers numbered 1.3 million as of the end of March, although the company did not reveal how many telco customers it now has.

Kogan.com added that as of the end of the period, it had cash of AU$19 million, inventories of AU$55 million, and trade and payables of AU$31 million. The decrease of AU$20.6 million in the latter category since last quarter was due to the normal drop-off following the peak Christmas period, the company explained.

"Kogan.com commenced the new calendar year with a strong quarter of continued growth as we execute our long-term strategy," Kogan.com founder and CEO Ruslan Kogan said in a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX).

"The business is poised to continue its growth trajectory into the seasonally strong end-of-financial-year quarter."

Vodafone Australia had at the end of 2015 announced reaching an agreement to wholesale its 3G mobile network to electronics manufacturer and retailer Kogan.com, adding 4G services to this in 2016.

Kogan.com then announced in June last year that it would also be launching NBN services sometime in 2018 with Vodafone, at the time saying they would also extend their mobile broadband agreement out to 2022, with "significant incentives" for both companies to continue the partnership thereafter.

"What we do in the way that we run our business is firstly we ensure parity of service with the partner, and then we do a lot of due diligence in evaluating how they operate," the chief executive said at CES 2018 in Las Vegas in January.

"We have a unique structure with Vodafone, where we are the branding, marketing, and customer acquisition arm. So Vodafone runs the service, Vodafone runs the network, the call centres, absolutely everything, and it's branded as Kogan mobile.

"The way that we've structured it makes a lot of sense, because for our business, we are doing what we are good at: Being the brand Kogan Mobile, the online trust, the customer acquisition, the digital marketing, and we can offer a Kogan-branded end-to-end experience for our customers whilst not -- we don't know how to run a telco."

Earlier this month, Kogan.com launched its National Broadband Network (NBN) service off the back of Vodafone's fixed-line coverage.

In addition to a AU$69 modem, Kogan Internet's month-to-month NBN plans start at AU$58.90 per month for the 12/1Mbps speed tier; AU$68.90 per month -- currently discounted to AU$58.90 per month for the first 24 months -- for 50/20Mbps speeds; and AU$88.90 per month for speeds of 100/40Mbps.

On the sidelines of CES earlier this year, Ruslan Kogan told ZDNet that the online retailer is in a better position than Australia's major telcos in the NBN services market, because it has never had to bear the expenses of building out fixed-line infrastructure investment, only to have to move customers across to the NBN.

"We are in a brilliant position in that industry because ... you've got all these telcos that have fixed infrastructure that have had capital expenses building out networks over the last few decades -- all of that just becomes meaningless, and everyone gets to buy at the same price from NBN and it becomes a customer acquisition play: Who can acquire customers the cheapest," he told ZDNet.

"Our cost of acquisition is the cheapest, and we can pass that saving onto the customer. So we're very excited by this; it's basically a government-mandated switchover of a huge utility that people want, need, and are using more and more of, and we will have an incredibly competitive price on it."

According to Kogan, his company would be "launching at the perfect time" after NBN had sorted its rollout issues.

Kogan.com in February announced AU$1.5 billion net profit for the six months ended December 31, with pro forma trading earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) of AU$7.3 million.

Revenue for the six-month period was AU$144 million, up from AU$105 million in the previous year, while Kogan Mobile brought in AU$1.1 million in gross sales.

Kogan.com went public in July last year.

Previous Kogan Coverage

Kogan.com in a 'brilliant position' for NBN: Ruslan Kogan

Having never undertaken a large fixed-line infrastructure spend, Ruslan Kogan says his company is in a better position than most to offer 'incredibly attractive' services, especially with NBN currently focused on repairing customer experience issues.

Kogan NBN service goes live

Kogan Internet has launched its NBN service off the back of Vodafone's offering, with plans maxing out at less than AU$90 per month for download speeds of 100Mbps and unlimited data.

Kogan Mobile brings online retailer AU$3.6m in revenue

For the 2017 financial year, the company's Vodafone mobile play accounted for only AU$3.6 million of its AU$289.5 million revenue total as it readies the launch of its NBN offering on the telco's network.

Kogan.com produces AU$1.5m profit as focus turns to brand building

The online retailer has posted AU$1.5 million in statutory after-tax profit for its first full half since going public last year.

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