Business

Telus hikes dividend on higher profit

Shares in Vancouver-based wireless phone company Telus Corp. rose Thursday after it announced plans to boost its dividend by about 10 per cent in each of the next two years.

Pledges 10% increases for next 2 years

Marie-Christine Wilhelmy and Franca Sicuso look over a display of mobile phones at a Telus store in Montreal in November. Telus reported a 19 per cent increase in quarterly profit Thursday. (Ryan Remiorz/Canadian Press)

Shares in Vancouver-based wireless phone company Telus Corp. rose Thursday after it announced plans to boost its dividend by about 10 per cent in each of the next two years.

Its stock closed up $1.79 cents, or 3.6 per cent, to $51.77 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

The firm also reported that higher wireless data usage helped boost profits 19 per cent in the first quarter.

Profits were $328 million in the first three months of the year, compared with $273 million during the same period last year.

Revenue came in above analyst expectations at $2.5 billion, compared with $2.3 billion a year earlier. Wireless data revenue grew 44 per cent.

Telus announced a dividend increase to 55 cents, payable in July. That's two-and-a-half cents more than it had planned.

The company said it added 52,000 new postpaid wireless customers during the quarter, while it lost 20,000 prepaid subscribers.  It also added 44,000 new television subscribers and 16,000 new Internet customers.

Telus' earnings per share for the first quarter were equal to $1.01, compared to 85 cents per share in the same quarter of 2010.

With files from The Canadian Press

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