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BT Ireland's broadband sales helps fuel profits hike

By John Mulgrew

Telecoms giant BT Ireland has posted a rise in its yearly profits fuelled by fibre optic broadband and TV package sales, its boss has said.

Revenues increased by 2% to £635m for business in Northern Ireland and the Republic, with a 4% rise in its pre-tax profits for the year ending March 2015.

But it did not break down the exact figure for its profits across the island.

BT Group as a whole posted profits of £3.17bn.

Chief executive Colm O'Neill told the Belfast Telegraph the "good set of results" and growth was helped along by strong demand for its fibre optic broadband services in Northern Ireland.

"We are very pleased and have seen good continued progress in the business," he said.

"In our business, there was continued uptake of fibre broadband.

"We have passed the 200,000 connection mark in Northern Ireland.

"Northern Ireland was broadly in line with how BT has performed.

"Other parts of our business also performed very well.

"There has been strong demand for fibre broadband and the value of what we have put in to the television bundles with sport - it's gone down very well."

The profit rise was also helped along thanks to business deals in Northern Ireland.

That included landing new deals, including a big public sector contract with NI Direct.

"With SMEs we released new products, and there were some larger contracts for larger business and the public sector," he said. And moving forward, Mr O'Neill said BT would "continue to build out the fibre network" across Northern Ireland.

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