Elisa, Telia, Tele2 all hiking prices despite growing profits in 2021
Estonia's big three telecoms firms, all of whom have hiked their prices this autumn, saw profits rise by as much as a third or more on year to the end of 2021.
The three companies – Elisa, Tele2 and Telia – have also warned of future tariff increases.
Elisa Teleteenused AS reported close to €56 million revenue last year, a rise of 3 percent on year, with a net profit of over €11 million, a 32 percent increase on year.
The company last year modernized its networks, including via a new optical cable network which runs in parallel to existing networks.
Elisa says it will continue the development of its cable network in Tallinn, Tartu, Harjumaa and Pärnu, this year, while in rural areas, state support will help boost services also.
Elisa says it invested €9.3 million in fixed assets last year.
As of the end of 2021, the company's staff totaled 211 people.
Telia Eesti AS reported nearly €355 million turnover a profit of over €43 million for 2021 – far in excess of the €27 million earned in 2020.
Telia says its investments in 2021 focused on network developments, and totaled close to €55 million domestically – which makes Telia one of the largest investors in Estonia.
Telia employs 1,610 people and one of the largest taxpayers in Estonia also.
Meanwhile, Tele2 reported a turnover of €83 million last year, a rise of 12 percent and the third consecutive year in which its turnover had increased.
Tele2 reported a profit of over €1.8 million, which, however, was below 2020's figure of close to €3 million.
A large proportion of Tele2's investments were spent on boosting network volumes and capacities and on modernization.
Tele2 also entered the fixed internet business last year, and has set a goal this year of boosting its market share and growing its business outside of Estonia.
Tele2 employed on average 330 people last year.
Telecoms firms: Be prepared for further price hikes in the future
All three companies, which also won a domestic 5G license each during the summer, have increased their prices this year, including with phones and other tech.
Elisa's consumer electronics cost more than 20 percent than they had a year ago, thanks, the company says, to the war in Ukraine, the energy crisis and disruptions caused to supply chains by China's ongoing Covid restrictions.
Mailiis Ploomann, head of the company's private customer unit, told ERR that more price increases are on the horizon in the next year too.
"It will probably become clear in the coming months as to which services are affected and to what extent, as, for half a year now, no energy-intensive company has enjoyed the luxury of making budgets and forecasts longer than a few months in advance, and has had to start changing them again after a month."
Tele2 says it upped its tariffs in the fall, on average at 15 percent.
Ines Estrin, the company's marketing director, said that investments in tech developments must ensure quality, while at the same time overall inflation and increased input and operating costs remain.
Telecomms services have also so far not risen as much as those of some other sectors, Tele2 says.
As reported by ERR News, from December, Telia is to hike its prices, including those of the Diiili mobile package, routers, and set-top boxes, along with other items.
Tele2 cites inflation and costs as the culprits.
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Editor: Andrew Whyte