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VimpelCom Makes USD 130-Million Profit in 2002 - 28 March, 2003

Mobile communications operator VimpelCom made a profit of USD 129.6 million in 2002, which represents an increase of 270% over 2001. VimpelCom operates under the Bee Line brand. According to Rosbalt's correspondent, these figures were revealed yesterday at a press conference in Moscow by company vice-president Nikolai Pryanishnikov. The vice-president added that VimpelCom's net operating income last year was USD 768.5 million, compared to USD 422.6 million in 2001. The company's average monthly return per user (ARPU) fell by 30.2% last year to USD 18.3. Last year the company managed to increase its subscriber base more than twofold. It currently has 6.15 million subscribers, of whom 2.22 million live outside of the Moscow licensing zone.

VimpelCom's capital investments totaled USD 578.3 million in 2002. USD 509.1 million of this sum was spent on property and equipment, and USD 69.2 million on acquiring other mobile operators. The company's outflow of subscribers last year was 30.8%, compared to 23% in 2001. It explains this increase in lost subscribers by growth in the subscriber base and 'internal migration' of subscribers from one tariff to another within the Bee Line GSM network.

VimpelCom (Moscow) is Russia's leading mobile communications operator and provides services under the Bee Line brand. The company has licenses covering 94% of the Russian population (137 million people), including Moscow, the Moscow Region, and St. Petersburg. The company's main shareholders are Dmitry Zimin (Alfa Group), who founded VimpelCom, and Norwegian concern Telenor.