US lobbyist severs ties with Chinese telecom ZTE

Reuters

A former U.S. lawmaker who lobbied for China's second largest telecommunications-equipment maker, ZTE Corp, severed ties with the company last month after reports that the FBI is investigating ZTE for allegedly selling banned computer equipment to Iran, according to a lobbying disclosure report.

Former Representative Jon Christensen, a Nebraska Republican, filed a termination report to the U.S. Senate's lobbying disclosure database saying he stopped representing the company as of July 13, a day after news broke of the FBI investigation.

RIM looks to sell NewBay, other assets: source

Reuters

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion is looking to sell cloud services provider NewBay and some of the other minor assets it recently acquired, as part of a strategic review process, according to a source familiar with the matter.

RIM acquired NewBay, a provider of photo, video, and social-networking tools for smartphones and computers, in October 2011 for reportedly around $100 million, as it sought to roll out a new strategy to stem its steady decline.

RIM declined to comment on the sale report.

Thai AIS enjoys mobile data boom

Thai mobile operator AIS has reported impressive gains in profit and revenues thanks to surging demand for mobile data services, continued growth in its voice business and lower amortization costs.

For the second quarter of the year, AIS saw a 43% increase in net income, compared with the same period last year, to 8.7 billion baht ($277 million), while revenues grew by 12%, to 26.7 billion baht.

Reliance profit up 3.2% as financing costs soar

Indian operator Reliance Communications has reported a 3.2% increase in second-quarter net income, to 1.62 billion rupees ($29 million), compared with the same period last year.

The results missed expectations based on a poll of 18 analysts conducted by Bloomberg that produced a median forecast of 1.84 billion rupees. Yet it was higher than a similar poll of 12 analysts, conducted by Dow Jones Newswires, that came up with a figure of 1.49 billion rupees.

Axtel ponders asset sale to stave off debt default

Mexican fixed-line operator Axtel is considering a sale of its wireless towers or fibre-optic lines to avoid defaulting on its debt, according to a report from Bloomberg.

The sale could reportedly raise as much as $300 million for Axtel, which would then rent the assets to continue operating as normal.

Bloomberg reckons that Axtel has to repay a total of $825 million of debt by 2019. In the meantime, it has been struggling to generate cash after slashing its prices in the face of tough competition from Telmex, owned by Carlos Slim’s America Movil.

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Date
Start Date: 
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
End Date: 
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Deutsche Telekom profit up 76% on sharp cost cuts

Deutsche Telekom, the largest telecoms operator in Europe, has reported an impressive 76.4% year-on-year increase in second-quarter net profit, to €614 million ($755 million), after taking further steps to reduce its costs.

Germany’s former state-owned monopoly reported only a 0.7% dip in revenues, to €14.38 billion, despite the financial headwinds still sweeping Europe.

Even before the onset of the euro crisis, the operator had been contending with fixed-line losses at home, tough competition in Europe’s mobile-phone markets and unsympathetic regulation in the EU.

MetroPCS, SK Telecom, LG Uplus claim VoLTE firsts

One US and two South Korean operators are vying for the claim to have launched the world’s first commercial VoLTE service.

MetroPCS, in the US, plus SK Telecom and LG Uplus, of South Korea, have all this week announced commercial launches of the technology, which allows voice services to run over ‘4G’ LTE networks.

In a press release, MetroPCS announced the “availability of the world’s first VoLTE-capable handsets and the first sale of a VoLTE-capable handset at one of the company’s Dallas/Fort Worth store locations”.

America Movil focused on Europe deals but open to opportunities

Reuters

Mexican cellphone giant America Movil will focus efforts in consolidating its two recent acquisitions in Europe and while it has no other transactions on the radar, it is open to opportunities, Carlos Slim Domit, the company's co-chairman, said on Wednesday.

"We don't have more operations (in Europe) in sight for the time being ... but we are always open to evaluate opportunities and alternatives in the market," Slim Domit, the eldest son of the world richest man, Carlos Slim Helu, told Reuters in an interview.

Starbucks embraces mobile payments with start-up Square

Reuters

Starbucks Corp's deal to use Square Inc to process payments at its U.S. coffee shops is a big win for a 2-year-old startup that is beginning to threaten established payment processors and shake up retailing.

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