UPDATE 5-Rogers profit boosted by smartphone push

Wed Oct 24, 2012 3:31pm EDT
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* Adjusted earnings C$0.96 a share vs C$0.90 year-ago

* Operating revenue up 1.4 pct at C$3.18 billion

* Proportion of smartphone subscribers jumps

* Willing to look at "selective" Astral assets

By Allison Martell

Oct 24 (Reuters) - Rogers Communications Inc, Canada's largest mobile phone company, said on Wednesday quarterly profit rose after stripping out special items, as a wave of new smartphone subscribers boosted wireless revenue.

Shares of Rogers jumped more than 5 percent after the Toronto-based company said the percentage of smartphone subscribers surged, before giving back some gains. Apple Inc's iPhone 5 went on sale late in the quarter.

Smartphones are an important revenue driver because each user pays Rogers nearly twice as much each month as a non-smartphone phone user.

"We are attracting and retaining our highest lifetime value customers, which is squarely on strategy, and the most significant driver of our top line," Chief Executive Nadir Mohamed said on a conference call with analysts and investors.   Continued...