Viettel has surpassed VNPT on pre-tax profit in 2010 for the first time. Viettel reportedly earned pre-tax profits of VND15.5 trillion ($775 million) last year, while VNPT Group mustered VND11.2 trillion ($560 million).
VNPT Group's revenue was estimated at VND101 trillion ($5 billion), a year-on-year increase of 27 per cent against last year's figure. Its rival, Viettel earned revenue of VND91 trillion ($4.55 billion) in 2010, a year-on-year increase of 52 per cent against 2009.
The gap between of VNPT Group and Viettel staff's productivity is growing. VNPT Group staff's productivity was estimated at VND1.1 billion ($563,000) in 2010, while Viettel's was nearly VND4 billion ($2 million).
VNPT Group had 15 million registered users in 2010 as new telephone subscribers signed in 2010 was equal to 78 per cent of 2009's number. Meanwhile Viettel signed up 46.3 million new telephone subscribers last year.
Lean organisation and high discount rates made the profits of Viettel higher than that of its main rival. Viettel had fixed total assets value of VND45 trillion ($2.2 billion).
Nguyen Manh Hung, deputy general director of Viettel, said revenue from overseas facilities would post a growth rate of 100 per cent.
VNPT Group chief Pham Long Tran said the group was still covering losses from fixed phone services due to decreasing fixed-phone subscriber numbers.
"The number of fixed phone subscribers has decreased by 20 per cent a year while VNPT has invested a lot in promoting fixed phone services and we have to cover losses," said Tran.
VNPT Group cut 5,000 staff from its affiliate Vietnam Post Corporation in 2010 to make the organisation leaner after the group completed the process of splitting its telecom and post businesses in 2008. However, its productivity has been still far lower than Viettel since 2008.
"We also have plan for cutting number of staff working for our Telecom Corporation, however, we have yet arranged funds for that," said Tran.
VNPT is still the country's largest telecom operator, running two large mobile networks, MobiFone and VinaPhone along with its international and domestic transmission business. Viettel runs the country's largest mobile network Viettel and another four networks in Cambodia, Laos, Haiti and Mozambique.