(MENAFN - AFP) Kuwaiti telecoms giant Zain said Sunday its net profits fell sharply in the third quarter and in the first nine months of 2015 due to conflict in Iraq and currency fluctuations.
The company said in a statement it posted a net profit of 38 million dinars ($125.8 million) in the July-to-September period, down from 46 million dinars ($152 million) in the same quarter of last year.
Net income for the first nine months dropped 27 percent to $391 million, from $533 million in the corresponding period of 2014, the statement said.
Zain attributed the slide in profits to the appreciation of the US dollar against the Kuwaiti dinar and continued instability in Iraq, where the company has significant operations.
It also attributed the fall to continued investments in new technology and a rise in competition.
"The board is working closely with the executive management to prudently deal with the rise in competition and other unavoidable currency and social challenges in several key markets," chairman Asaad al-Banwan said.
Consolidated revenues on September 30 hit $2.8 billion, down from $3.18 billion a year ago.
The company's customer base rose to 45.6 million from 43.7 million a year ago.
Besides Kuwait, where it is the largest mobile phone operator, Zain has operations in Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Sudan. It also manages a unit in Morocco.
The Kuwaiti government holds a stake of almost 25 percent in the company, which is one of three mobile operators in the Gulf emirate, alongside National Telecommunications Co. (Wataniya) and Kuwait Telecommunications Co. (VIVA).