Al Yah Satellite Communications Company (Yahsat) has reported that it generated USD 8.347 million (representing 2.94% of the total revenue) in revenue from sales of its satellite services in Africa for the nine months ended 30 September 2021. This represent 2.94% of the company’s total revenue in the third quater (Q3) 2021, up from 2.10% revenue recorded in Q3 2020.
In addition, Yahsat reported a net income (profit attributable to shareholders) of AED 159.0 million [USD 43.3 million] for the nine months. After adjusting for one-off items, the normalised net income of AED 200.1 million [USD 54.5 million] exceeded the prior year by AED 61.4 million [USD 16.7 million] (or 44.3%). Also, the normalised net income margin of 19.2% for the nine months significantly exceeded the corresponding margin of 12.9% in the previous year.
The top line continued to gain momentum with revenue for the nine months of AED 1.0 billion [USD 284.3 million], which is broadly in line with the prior year, demonstrating a sustained and robust performance since Q1 2021. In addition, a strong pipeline across all business lines is set to support further revenue growth, with several new commercial and government contracts secured and other significant deals already signed as of the date of this announcement.
Furthermore, Yahsat maintained an adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation) margin above 60%, with Adjusted EBITDA for the nine months of AED 628.3 million [USD 171.1 million]. Normalised Adjusted EBITDA of AED 643.6 million [USD 175.3 million] exceeded the prior year by 2.5%, generating a margin of 61.6%, higher than the previous year margin of 58.3%, reflecting continued cost and working capital efficiencies.
Underpinning the 9M 2021 results was a resilient Q3 performance, with revenues broadly stable (approximately 1% lower than Q3 2020) and a notable increase in profitability, with Normalised Adjusted EBITDA up by AED 28.9 million [USD 7.9 million] (15.3%) and Normalised Net Income up by AED 31.7 million [USD 8.6 million] (99.2%).
Yahsat maintained a high cash conversion ratio of approximately 97% for the period ended 30 September 2021, driven by low maintenance related capital expenditure.
Key Business Updates
The T4-NGS programme, which started in 2020, remains on track, with several vital contracts now concluded. For example, in June 2021, Yahsat entered into a 15-year T4-NGS Capacity Services Agreement adding more than AED 2.570 billion [more than USD 700 million] to contracted future revenues. Also, in September 2021, Yahsat selected SpaceX Falcon 9 for the launch of the T4-NGS satellite in 2023 and awarded Cobham SATCOM the contract to deliver a comprehensive mobile broadband system, including ground infrastructure.
Furthermore, the success of the refinancing programme of AED 2.572.6 billion [USD 700.5 million], which was completed in June 2021, boosted the Group’s already strong cash position and supported a healthy net debt to EBITDA ratio of 0.5x as of 30 September 2021.
Attractive Dividend Policy
In October 2021, Yahsat’s Board of Directors endorsed the management’s recommendation to update the Group’s current dividend policy, allowing it to distribute dividends on a semi-annual basis going forward. Consequently, the revised policy is subject to shareholder approval at the next AGM in 2022. Moreover, this reflects the Board’s confidence in the business’s financial strength, a positive outlook on cash flow, and Yahsat’s ability to fund future investments.
A final dividend of AED 192.8 million [USD 52.5 million] for the financial year 2021 is expected to be paid to all shareholders in April 2022, bringing the total dividend for the year 2021 to AED 385.6 million [USD 105 million]. In addition, the dividend is expected to grow by at least 2% per year, with the expected dividend payout of 15.96 AE fils in 2022, 16.28 AE fils in 2023 and 16.61 AE fils in 2024.
Commenting on the results, Ali Al Hashemi, Chief Executive Officer at Yahsat, said, “We continue to see a strong performance in our revenues coupled with high levels of profitability and cash flow. Moreover, we are laying the foundations for future growth by signing new deals across our Commercial and Government businesses, which add to our contracted future revenues and underpin our commitment to a progressive dividend.”
“Our recent appointment by the UAE Government to assess the expansion of our existing fleet with two potential new satellites presents Yahsat with significant additional growth opportunities across the business, further enhancing our longer-term outlook.”
Al Hashemi added, “We remain on track to achieve all our strategic objectives, financially and operationally, supported by the rapid post-pandemic recovery of our business segments globally. We will continue forging partnerships with the world’s most innovative companies to enhance our competitiveness and continue to create value for our customers, shareholders and the UAE.”
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