7/27/2009 10:58:00 AM
Weekend Papers: Vodafone angles for T-Mobile
Vodafone’s chief executive has called for consolidation between operators in the UK market increasing speculation it will bid for T-Mobile.
Vodafone’s CEO, Vittorio Colao, said that fewer networks in the UK’s saturated market would mean lower costs for customers reported.
Colao would not comment on buying T-Mobile but said that there was no reason why T-Mobile UK should not be bought by a competitor, even if it took the buyer’s market share above 40 per cent.
Colao said: ‘I’ve said a number of times and for many years that the UK has more operators than the other markets, which means more investment in infrastructure being fragmented, and this does not lead to lower prices for customers — just a more inefficient system.’
Colao was speaking as Vodafone reported revenues of £10.74 billion for April, May and June, up 9.3 per cent on the same quarter last year, but down 2.4 per cent on a like-for-like basis. The results were in line with forecasts.
Meanwhile in the UK, Vodafone lost a net 159,000 customers during the quarter, it saw a 4.7 per cent fall on a like-for-like basis as revenues from voice calls which dropped from £822 million to £726 million a year ago.
Vodafone has dropped call charges for the 0800 swine flu helpline after facing criticism for making its customers pay for calls to the National Pandemic Flu service.
The network said it would not be charging for the helpline contrary to claims that customers could be charged 20p a minute, which could add up to £4 for 15 to 20 minute call to check whether they have the virus.
0800 numbers are free from a landline but can cost up to 40p from a mobile phone - opposing operators, O2, Orange and T-Mobile have all dropped charges for the helpline.
Ericsson’s $1.1bn bid for Nortel’s wireless assets is expected to be approved by US and Canadian courts on Tuesday as Nokia Siemens loses out.
Nokia Siemens was out-bid by Ericsson for Nortel’s next generation or long term evolution (LTE) assets.
Nokia Siemens remained bullish it would retain its market lead in the global wireless infrastructure industry despite losing the bid.
Nortel’s units were put on sale by after the company applied for bankruptcy protection in January, blaming the impact of global recession.
Nokia Siemens’, chief markets operations officer, Bosco Novak, said: ‘Ours was an opportunistic bid aimed at supporting the great progress we've made in North America in the past 18 months, and we are very confident that momentum will continue to grow.’