Belfast Telegraph

Vodafone reports sixth quarter of growth as sales rise

By Ben Woods

Mobile phone giant Vodafone has notched up its sixth consecutive quarter of revenue growth, lifted by a strong performance in the emerging markets.

The group saw organic service revenue - a closely-watched measure of sales - rise 1.4% to £9.2bn in the three months to the end of December last year, beating the 1.2% rise in the previous quarter.

It was buoyed by "strong" service revenue growth in its India and South African businesses, which grew 2.3% and 7.2% respectively in the third quarter.

The Newbury-based company also saw a brightening picture across Europe, with service revenues continuing to recover, down 0.6% in the three months to the end of December last year, compared to a 1% drop in the previous quarter.

The group also confirmed that it was on course to hit full-year earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of between £11.7bn and £12bn.

Shares in the FTSE 100 company were up 2% in early trading as investors digested the financial update.

It came just days after it confirmed talks were under way with cable firm Liberty Global over a joint venture in the Netherlands.

Vodafone - which had decided to abandon talks with Liberty Global six months earlier over a possible asset swap - said the discussions were ongoing and stressed they "do not extend beyond the creation of a joint venture in the Netherlands".

Vittorio Colao, Vodafone group chief executive, hailed the boost in service revenues over the third quarter, stating the business had taken "another step forward".

Belfast Telegraph