|In CHF million, except where indicated||2017||2016||Change|
|Operating income before depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA)||4,295||4,293||0.0%|
|EBITDA as % of net revenue||36.8||36.9|
|Operating income (EBIT)||2,131||2,148||–0.8%|
|Share of net income attributable to equity holders of Swisscom Ltd||1,570||1,604||–2.1%|
|Earnings per share (in CHF)||30.31||30.97||–2.1%|
|Operating free cash flow||2,159||1,791||20.5%|
|Capital expenditure in property, plant and equipment and intangible assets||2,378||2,416||–1.6%|
|Net debt at end of year||7,447||7,846||–5.1%|
|Full-time equivalent employees at end of year (number)||20,506||21,127||–2.9%|
Swisscom’s net revenue was level with the previous year at CHF 11,662 million. Reported revenue increased by 0.2%, while on the basis of constant exchange rates it fell by 0.2%. Revenue in the Swiss core business decreased by CHF 199 million or 2.1% to CHF 9,058 million, mainly due to declining revenue from fixed-line telephony and lower income from roaming services. The Italian subsidiary Fastweb reported strong revenue and customer growth. Revenue rose by EUR 149 million or 8.3% to EUR 1,944 million and the number of broadband customers by 96,000 or 4.1% to 2.45 million.
At CHF 4,295 million, operating income before depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) remained on a par with the previous year. It was impacted by non-recurring items, including one-off income from legal disputes at Fastweb amounting to CHF 102 million (prior year: CHF 60 million) and net expenses associated with headcount reductions in the Swiss business of CHF 61 million. Excluding non-recurring items and on the basis of constant exchange rates, EBITDA fell by CHF 23 million or 0.5%. In the Swiss core business, a decrease of 2.4% or CHF 88 million resulted on a like-for-like basis. The drop in revenue was partially offset by savings in indirect costs. Fastweb’s EBITDA increased by EUR 58 million or 9.6% on an adjusted basis. Consolidated operating income (EBIT) contracted by CHF 17 million or 0.8% to CHF 2,131 million due to higher depreciation and amortisation, while net income was down CHF 36 million or 2.2% to CHF 1,568 million. Payment of an unchanged dividend of CHF 22 per share for the 2017 financial year will be proposed to the Annual General Meeting.
Capital expenditure fell by CHF 38 million or 1.6% to CHF 2,378 million. Progress continues to be made on expanding the broadband networks. In Switzerland, capital expenditure for the expansion of the broadband networks remained virtually unchanged at a high level. With other investments declining, capital expenditure in Switzerland fell overall by CHF 96 million or 5.4% to CHF 1,678 million. Capital expenditure at Fastweb rose by EUR 41 million or 7.1% to EUR 622 million, mainly as a result of higher customer-driven investment.
Operating free cash flow increased by CHF 368 million or 20.5% to CHF 2,159 million, fuelled chiefly by the improvement in net working capital. At CHF 7,447 million, net debt was CHF 399 million lower than at the end of 2016. The ratio of net debt to EBITDA is 1.7 (prior year: 1.8).
Headcount decreased year-on-year by 621 FTEs or 2.9% to 20,506 FTEs. In comparison with the previous year, headcount in Switzerland fell by 684 FTEs or 3.7% to 17,688 FTEs as a result of the declining core business. More than three quarters of the reduction was offset by natural fluctuation and vacancy management.
For 2018, Swisscom expects net revenue of around CHF 11.6 billion, EBITDA of around CHF 4.2 billion and capital expenditure of less than CHF 2.4 billion. Subject to achieving its targets, Swisscom will propose payment of an unchanged dividend of CHF 22 per share for the 2018 financial year at the 2019 Annual General Meeting.