Vodafone saw its revenue slip in the fiscal third quarter but recovered ground in Spain, where it has been under pressure from Telefónica and Orange since dropping top-tier football from its offering.
In Spain, Vodafone grew its TV base by 13,000, compared with a loss of 66,000 in its dire second quarter, taking its TV total to 1.275 million. It also reduced its rate of loss of broadband customers from 69,000 to 6,000, taking its total to 3.216 million. The company continued to bleed contract mobile customers, losing 94,000 in the quarter compared with 106,000 lost in the second quarter. However, it said that most of these were low-value secondary SIMs.
Vodafone España has taken steps to reinforce its TV proposition in the country following the loss of football rights, increasing its exclusive catalogue of content and launching the FOXNOW SVOD service exclusively in the country.
In Germany, Vodafone’s other main cable market, the company lost 19,000 TV customers during a quarter when it completed its digital switchover, taking its total to 7.611 million. However, the group’ investment in high-speed broadband with DOCSIS 3.1 saw it gain 73,000 broadband customers, taking its total to 6.808 million.
In Italy, where Vodafone saw its performance improve, the company added 17,000 TV customers to take its total to 95,000, while in Portugal, where, like Italy, it provides a TV service based on its new OTT-like platform, Vodafone also added 17,000 customers to take its total to 596,000.
Elsewhere in Europe, Vodafone added 10,000 TV customers, taking its total to 138,000. Overall, the company had 9.715 million customers at the end of the quarter, up 38,000.
Vodafone’s Dutch JV with Liberty Global, VodafoneZiggo, has yet to report numbers. The group had 3.919 million TV subscribers at the end of Q2.
Vodafone’s overall revenues were down 6.8% to €10.996 billion for the quarter, pushed lower by currency movements and the sale of its Qatar operation.
““We have executed at pace this quarter and have improved the consistency of our commercial performance. Lower mobile contract churn across our markets and improved customer trends in Italy and Spain are encouraging, however these have not yet translated into our financial results, with a similar revenue trend in Europe to Q2. We enjoyed good growth across our emerging markets with the exception of South Africa, which was impacted by our pricing transformation initiatives and a challenging macroeconomic environment. Overall, this performance underpins our confidence in our full year guidance,” said CEO Nick Read.
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