INWIT: Board of Directors examines and approves the Interim Report on Operations as of 30 September 2021
Rome, 4 November 2021 – The Board of Directors of Infrastrutture Wireless Italiane S.p.A. (INWIT), met today, chaired by Emanuele Tournon, and examined and approved the Interim Report on Operations as of 30 September 2021.
3Q 2021 main results
The results of the third quarter of 2021 confirm the growth of the main industrial KPIs, revenues and an improvement in the profitability:
- Revenues came to 198.1 million euros, including 0.9 million euros in one-off revenues, with growth of +6.5% on last year (organic growth of +6.0%) deriving from the progressive impact of new hostings contracted in previous quarters.
- EBITDA came to 180.9 million euros, including 0.9 million euros in one-off revenues, showing +4.7% growth (organic growth of +4.1%) as compared with the same period of 2020. The EBITDA margin came in at 91.3% of revenues.
- This growth, together with greater efficiency in leasing costs, has led to expansion of the EBITDAaL margin, which came to 132.3 million euros, up +9.3%, and as a percentage of revenues reached 66.8% in Q3 2021.
- Net profit totalled 54.6 million euros, up +35.7% compared to the same period of 2020.
- Recurring Free Cash Flow totalled 97.1 million euros, slightly down by -0.4% compared to the same period of 2020 mainly due to the impact of the payment of financial charges.
- At 30 September 2021, net financial debt came to 4.1 billion euros, of which approximately 1 billion euros referred to IFRS16. Financial leverage has dropped to 5.6X (from 5.9X at end June 2021).
- The industrial results confirm the growth trend of the main indicators:
- more than 900 new hostings have been contracted, due to the contribution of both anchor customers and other customers; total hostings offered to market operators reaches approximately 45 thousand units, up +10% on the same period of 2020;
- the new site development programme continues with 54 new towers during the quarter for a total of more than 200 during the year, more than 3 times 2020;
- acceleration of the multi-operator microcell coverage plan in the places of greatest concentration of users and traffic; INWIT has invested in road and motorway coverage by acquiring 700 systems in tunnels and 42 DAS systems;
- efficiency continues to improve, with the pursuit of the plan to renegotiate leasing contracts and purchase land.
Main results at 30 September 2021
During the first nine months of FY 2021, all the main economic and financial indicators have shown growth.
Revenues stood at 581.2 million euros, up +22.8% on the same period of 2020 (473.5 million euros), including one-off revenues (organic growth of +24.2%). On a like-for-like basis, revenues were up +3.6% compared to the first nine months of 2020 (organic growth of +4.6%).
EBITDA came to 529.8 million euros, including 1.6 million euros in one-off revenues, showing +22.5% growth (organic growth of +22.1%) as compared with the first nine months of 2020. EBITDAaL was 383.4 million euros, up by +29.1% compared to the same period of 2020. On a like-for-like basis, EBITDAaL was up +8.2% compared to the first nine months of 2020. Net profit for the period totalled 149.6 million euros, up +33.7% compared to the same period of 2020. Recurring Free Cash Flow for the first nine months of 2021 was 281.4 million euros, up by +23.9% compared to the same period of 2020.
Investments for the period came to 81.4 million euros, up 3.8 million euros compared to the first nine months of 2020 (+4.9%) and were mainly allocated to the development of new sites, of indoor micro-cell coverage with DASs and the acquisition of land.
Sustainability Plan progress
During the third quarter of 2021, the transformation of the company into an increasingly sustainable business continued strongly, with the aim of generating long-term value and helping drive, improve and assure the social and economic development of the communities in which we operate.
More specifically, the Company has adopted
- the Health, Safety and Environment Policy, which formalises INWIT’s commitment to health and safety for its employees and suppliers and to reducing environmental impacts;
- the Energy Policy, which formalises INWIT’s commitment to go about its business in the pursuit of principles of continuous improvement in its energy performance.
Both Policies have been approved by the Board of Directors and published on the Company’s website, to assure ever greater transparency in the commitments made.
INWIT has improved significantly in its ESG rating, with:
- the inclusion in the Refinitiv 2021 D&I Top 100 Index, as the second company in Italy, 31st worldwide and second in the sector on a global level;
- upgrade of the GRESB Infrastructure Public Disclosure rating from D to C with a score that has improved from 35 to 53.
The ratings upgrades are available on the Company website in the “Sustainability” section.
Events after 30 September 2021
On 21 October, closing was completed of the transaction involving INWIT’s purchase of approximately 700 antenna systems, covering 1,000 km of road and motorway tunnels, along with 42 DAS systems from Vodafone Italia for a price of approximately 70 million euros.
Details were given in the press releases issued on 29 July and 21 October.
The COVID-19 health emergency has brought about a decline in the economy, with potentially negative impacts on the Company’s economic and financial position. The rapid spread of COVID-19, beginning in March 2020, and the ensuing health emergency, have produced great economic uncertainty both in Italy and across the globe.
The Company deems the situation to be medium risk as, despite the negative economic situation, INWIT’s activity is essential for the provision of services to operators; at present, the Company has not recorded any significant impact on business performance associated with the health crisis.
The Company maps out COVID-19-related risks and assesses the possible onset of the events affected by such risks, which are considered unlikely, given that the relevant industrial sector is not particularly volatile, existing hostings have a cyclical nature and contracts are long-term.
At present, the economic results have suffered no significant negative impacts that could give rise to losses in economic/financial performance or delays in the company’s strategic planning.
Lastly, it should be noted that the current pandemic has led to a general acceleration in the digitisation processes and a significant increase in data traffic on the networks of the Company’s main customers, resulting in a positive impact on demand for the services offered.
In order to guarantee consistency with the provisions introduced by Decree-Law no. 127 of 21 September 2021, INWIT has defined and informed all employees of the protocol setting out the organisational measures adopted, including the procedures to apply and the parties assigned to perform the verification, envisaging a specific communication plan and establishing dedicated information channels.
Outlook for the 2021 financial year
Strengthened by a deep-rooted transformation, after the merger with Vodafone Towers, INWIT has become the largest operator in the Wireless Infrastructure sector in Italy, with the mission of supporting the TIM and Vodafone anchor tenants in creating the new network for the deployment of 5G, also ensuring access to its infrastructure for the entire market.
The results of the first nine months of 2021 recorded an increase for all main economic indicators compared to the same period of 2020, speeding up organic growth in the third quarter of 2021 and overall growth in hostings of +10% on end September 2020. Investments in the period for over 80 million euros focused, as per the plan, on the creation of new sites (towers), the deployment of indoor and outdoor micro-coverage with DAS (Distributed Antenna System) and an increase in owned plots of land.
In November 2020, INWIT presented an update to the 2021-2023 industrial plan, whose forecasts, including those for FY 2021, are confirmed in line with that reported on 29 July 2021.
From an operative viewpoint, in the fourth quarter of 2021, the company will continue to focus on the construction of new sites, on the growth of hosting and on the development of revenues from new services. The objective of optimising leasing costs, a driver to expand the EBITDAaL margin and the growth of Recurring Free Cash Flow has also been confirmed.
In the wireless infrastructure market, the profound transformation process and increased demand for services from mobile operators and other radio network players is continuing. Mobile operators need to increase their service access points to expand their 4G coverage and deploy 5G. Fixed wireless access providers are also increasing their networks to expand coverage and improve the quality of service offered to customers.
It is also expected that business performance will benefit from the improved outlook for the digital, infrastructural and technological investment cycle in Italy: the major resources allocated by Next Generation EU can, both directly and indirectly, support INWIT’s development, which is excellently positioned as an enabler of the digital transformation currently in motion.
The economic and financial results of INWIT at 30 September 2021 will be illustrated to the financial community during a conference call scheduled for 4 November 2021 at 6.30 p.m. (CET). Journalists may listen to the conference call, by calling: +39 02 8020927. The presentation to support the conference call will be made available in advance in the Investors section of the company website www.inwit.it.
Pursuant to subsection 2, Article 154-bis of the Consolidated Law on Finance, the Manager responsible for preparing the company’s accounting documents, Diego Galli, has declared that the accounting disclosures contained in this press release correspond to the documentary evidence and the accounting books and records.