SK Telecom Co., the country's top mobile operator, said Tuesday its fourth-quarter net profit halved amid rising competition among local telecommunications firms.
Net profit came to 293.6 billion won ($272 million) in the October-December period, compared with 519 billion won tallied a year earlier, SK Telecom said in a regulatory filing.
Revenue rose 3.3 percent on-year to 4.2 trillion won, while operating profit edged down 5.4 percent to 509.7 billion won.
For all of 2013, the company posted a net profit of 1.6 trillion won. Its revenue advanced 2.9 percent to 16.6 trillion won and operating profit increased 16.2 percent to 2.1 trillion won.
SK Telecom attributed the yearly gain to its dominance in the long-term evolution service, with the number of subscribers reaching 13.5 million at end-December to account for half of its users.
The company's business-to-business service sector also gathered ground last year, with the revenue advancing 60 percent to 434 billion won.
The company also earned some 600 billion won from shares in its affiliate SK hynix Inc., which posted record-high earnings for fiscal 2013.
SK said it will continue to make efforts to provide wider-bandwidth LTE-A service in the second half of the year, adding it will also enhance its competitiveness through the 3band LTE-A service.
Currently, market leader SK Telecom controls roughly half of the market, followed by No. 2 player KT Corp. and smallest LG Uplus, with all three vying neck-and-neck to take the lead in the LTE technology. (Yonhap News)