Once at the top of the corporate profit list, Israel’s cell phone service companies have suffered sharp losses over the past three years, after the reform in the cellular service market was announced – and last week, with most of the companies releasing their profit and loss statement for 2015, it appeared that last year was the worst ever.
Leading the pack for losses, reported Channel 20, was Hot Mobile, which showed a 97 percent loss in profits over 2014. Cellcom, once Israel’s most profitable cell phone company, saw profits slashed by 73 percent. Partner, formerly Orange Israel, lost “only” 7 percent last year – but that was after a very aggressive cost-cutting program that saw hundreds of workers fired.
The only public cell phone service company that has not yet reported its profit and loss statement is Pelephone, which is part of Bezeq – which, analysts said, has been improving its bottom line of late. Golan Telecom, which is privately held, has not released a profit and loss statement, but its management claims that the company is making money.
The reason for the losses among the companies, of course, is the competition generated by Golan. As a result, Channel 20 said, the cost of cell phone service today is as much as 70 percent lower than it was just four years ago.