Newspaper article International New York Times

Vodafone Upbeat despite Fall in Revenue

Newspaper article International New York Times

Vodafone Upbeat despite Fall in Revenue

Article excerpt

The telecom giant's chief said many of its European markets had started to show signs of recovery, particularly as mobile streaming has increased.

The British telecom giant Vodafone reported an eighth consecutive quarterly decline in revenue on Friday, but said that performance in its European operations was starting to improve.

Vodafone, the world's second-largest carrier based on subscribers, after China Mobile, said its service revenue fell 4.2 percent, to 9.4 billion pounds, or roughly $16 billion, in the three months through June 30, compared with the same period last year.

Service revenue includes sales from voice, data and messaging services, but excludes foreign currency changes and asset sales or purchases.

The carrier has embarked on a two-year, Pounds 19 billion upgrade of its global mobile network, as it uses the proceeds of the sale of its 45 percent stake in Verizon Wireless for $130 billion.

These upgrades, however, have yet to shore up sales in its European operations, which represent roughly two-thirds of the company's yearly revenue. The region's sluggish economic growth and ongoing competition from other carriers continue to hamper Vodafone's operations, particularly in Italy and Spain.

Yet Vittorio Colao, the company's chief executive, said that many of Vodafone's European markets had started to show signs of recovery, particularly as consumers increasingly used their smartphones and tablets to stream music and video services through those devices.

"Our performance is beginning to stabilize," Mr. Colao said on Friday. "We are increasingly well positioned to deliver high-speed mobile and fixed data services to consumers and businesses."

Vodafone and other large European carriers like Telefonica of Spain and Deutsche Telekom of Germany are looking to consolidate their positions within the region's telecom markets through a series of deals for cable, mobile and fixed-line assets. …

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