Korea’s smallest mobile carrier, LG Uplus Corp. said Monday that it swung into the red in the fourth quarter of 2010 from one year ago, hurt by depreciation costs.
Net loss stood at 49.2 billion won ($44.1 million) in the October-December period, compared with a 78.4 billion won net income a year earlier, the company said in a regulatory filing.
The mobile operator said it had lost money in the three-month period due to the depreciation costs that amounted to 88.9 billion won.
Sales jumped 68 percent from a year ago to 2 trillion won while it logged operating loss of 48.6 billion won in the same period, compared with a 88.6 billion won operating profit in the year-earlier quarter.
For the full year, LG Uplus net income surged 23.3 percent on-year to 570 billion won. Its 2010 operating income inched up 0.2 percent to 655.3 billion and annual sales rose 12.1 percent to 8.5 trillion won.
The company, formerly LG Telecom Ltd., merged with its fixed-line operator LG Dacom Corp. and broadband Internet service provider LG Powercom Corp. as of January 2010, in a bid to better compete with its bigger rivals. It is the country’s third-largest mobile operator after SK Telecom Co. and KT Corp.
LG Uplus plans to invest 1.12 trillion won this year in the faster-generation of wireless technology called long-term evolution (LTE) as well as fixed-line and wireless networks, it said in a separate company filing.