+ Connections recovered from lockdown. Residential connections were 9,088 in 2Q21, after only 827 in 1Q21. Another positive was its addition of 470 non-residential connections, though still not sufficient to cover 1Q21’s loss of 681 connections.
– Ducts and manholes could deteriorate further. Revenue from this segment could remain weak as joint projects with its major telco customer have slowed down. This customer is building its own fibre projects and has become less reliant on NetLink.
Operations are expected to be stable, supported by a gradual rise in residential connections. Following the migration of StarHub’s (STH SP, NEUTRAL, S$1.24) customers from cable to fibre in 2019, residential connections are now trending at 5,000 per quarter vs. 24,900 in FY20. This is consistent with expected annual household formations in Singapore. FCF of S$113mn generated in 1H21 can well cover the S$98.6mn in dividends payable, in our estimation.
Maintain ACCUMULATE and TP of S$1.03
Dividend yields remain attractive and sustainable. Minimal changes to our forecasts. For FY21e, we are still expecting a DPS of 5.08 cents. This implies a payout of S$198mn, which should be supported by FY21e FCF of S$204mn.