China Mobile has reported first half pretax profits of $1.8 billion, up from $1.7 billion for the same period in 2001. This is ahead of expectations, as analysts feared that the Chinese market was beginning to slow down. The operator is now the world’s biggest mobile phone company.
The results confirm that China Mobile’s customer base is continuing to grow at a fast pace. Following last month’s acquisition of eight local operators in China, China Mobile says it now has 105.4 million users. UK-based Vodafone is now the second biggest operator, with 103.8 million users worldwide.
Although the number of mobile users continues to grow, China Mobile is earning less from each user. Average revenue per user was $14.86 over the last three months. However, two years ago China Mobile was earning $29.84 per user.