SaskTel reported a drop in revenues according to its annual financial report.
Released on Tuesday, the report details a $29.6 million (2.3 per cent) reduction in revenues compared to the previous year.
The Crown attributes the reduction largely to the current economic environment, regional wireless pricing, changing consumer behaviour and increasing competition.
“SaskTel has been proudly operating for the past 110 years and as the years have passed, our company has risen to the challenges posed by constantly changing technologies, and a marketplace that grows more sophisticated and demanding each year,” SaskTel Acting President and CEO Doug Burnett said. “And, while SaskTel has continually adapted its operations to face these new realities, the one thing that’s always stayed the same is our focus on delivering exceptional customer experiences.”
Despite the decrease in revenues, SaskTel did have a strong financial year with dividends paid of $89.9 million, an increase of $59.9 million over the previous year.
SaskTel’s revenues are composed primarily of wireless (40.9 per cent); maxTV™ service, internet, and data (27.9 per cent); along with local access, enhanced services, and long distance (18.7 per cent).
SaskTel invested an additional $302.0 million in capital expenditures during the 2017-18 year in an effort to improve customer experience and create opportunities to provide additional enhancements and capabilities in the future.
“SaskTel provides strong returns to the province of Saskatchewan by managing its costs, optimizing its legacy services, introducing new competitive services and revenue growth in key business segments, including retail wireless, maxTV™ service, internet, data, and new and emerging products and services,” Minister Responsible for SaskTel Don Morgan said in a news release.
“SaskTel’s commitment to continued investments in broadband infrastructure throughout the province, combined with its focus on customer experience, is providing the platform for SaskTel to be the best at connecting people to their world.”
SGI reports solid earnings
It was another solid year for both divisions of SGI, as the Crown also tabled its annual report Wednesday.
The Saskatchewan Auto Fund is the self-sustaining, compulsory auto insurance plan which had solid investment earnings of $162.8 million.
The number of people killed or injured as a result of impaired driving was reduced over the year thanks in a large part to tougher penalties and SGI ad campaigns like “People Shouldn’t Disappear” and “Be A Good Wingman.”
“Overall we are very pleased with the performance and service of the Saskatchewan Auto Fund,” Minister Responsible for SGI Joe Hargrave said. “Our goal of having the safest roads in all of Canada is an ambitious one, but we are committed to this work, and we will continue to bring awareness to these important safety issues.”
SGI’s Safe Driver Recognition and Business Recognition programs provided $144.2 million in discounts to customers.
SGI CANADA is the competitive side of SGI’s operations, selling property and casualty insurance in Saskatchewan, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario and British Columbia.
It had another year of success with a profit of $59.4 million.
“SGI CANADA continues to focus on growth, and has successfully increased the share of business written out of province,” Hargrave said. “The company is on pace to achieve its target of $1 billion in premium written by 2020 with 40 per cent written outside Saskatchewan. Geographic and product diversification helps keep the company stable and insulate it from losses in any one region.”
All three Crown reports can be found online.