Financial

China Telecom net income soars on iPhone adoption

China Telecom has reported a sharp rise in earnings and revenues for the first six months of the year thanks to soaring demand for the iPhone and mobile data services.

The operator – China’s third-biggest behind China Mobile (Beijing, China) and China Unicom (Beijing, China) – saw net income increase by 15.9% for the first half, to RMB10.2 billion ($1.67 billion), compared with the same period last year, while revenues grew by 14.1%, to RMB138 billion, over the same period.

MTS swings to net profit on data growth, one-off gains

Russia’s MTS swung to a net profit and reported revenue growth for the three months ending June thanks to rising demand for mobile data services and various one-off gains, including settlements related to its disputed ownership of Bitel, an operator in the Kyrgyz Republic.

Capita, CGI and Telefonica win UK smart-grid contracts

UK authorities have announced their preferred suppliers for contracts worth some £2.8 billion ($4.39 billion) that form part of the nationwide rollout of a smart grid aimed at reducing energy costs and waste, with Capita, Spanish telecoms operator Telefonica and CGI among the winning bidders.

According to a statement from the Department of Energy and Climate Change, outsourcing specialist Capita (London, UK) will become the Data and Communications Company (DCC) provider in a deal worth some £175 million.

Sirius boosts connected-car credentials with $530 million Agero acquisition

Sirius XM Radio has announced a $530 million cash takeover of Agero’s connected-vehicle business in a deal that will allow the radio broadcaster to strengthen its position in the burgeoning market for connected-vehicle services.

Telekom Austria linked with $1.3 billion bid for Serbia Broadband: Bloomberg

Austrian telecoms incumbent Telekom Austria has been linked with a €1 billion ($1.3 billion) bid for cable company Serbia Broadband in a report from Bloomberg.

Citing sources familiar with the proceedings, Bloomberg says that Telekom Austria (Vienna, Austria) has re-entered bidding for the Serbian company, after dropping off a list of companies examining Serbia Broadband’s (Belgrade, Serbia) books, with other interested parties said to include Providence Equity Partners, Cinven Advisers and Altice Finco.

Canada's telecoms to change tack in anti-Verizon crusade: sources

Reuters

Canada's three biggest wireless companies plan to attack Verizon Communications Inc's role in the U.S. government's electronic spying scandal, as they scramble to force Ottawa to rethink rules that encourage Verizon to set up in Canada, according to four sources.

The Canadian government has so far spurned an intense lobbying effort from the trio - Rogers Communications (Toronto, Canada), BCE Inc (Montreal, Canada) and Telus Corp (Burnaby, Canada) - by insisting its policies will cut Canadians' wireless bills.

Cisco cutting 4,000 jobs, CEO sees slow progress

Reuters

Network equipment maker Cisco Systems Inc is cutting 4,000 jobs, or 5 percent of its workforce, as it makes a fresh attempt to reduce costs and refocus on growth areas in the face of uncertain demand for its networking equipment.

Shares of the world's biggest network equipment maker fell more than 9 percent after hours, their biggest drop in more than a year if reflected on Nasdaq on Thursday.

Dutch foundation threatens to block America Movil bid for KPN

An independent Dutch foundation has expressed concern about the proposed acquisition of KPN by Latin American telecoms giant America Movil, casting doubt over the likelihood of a takeover, reports Reuters.

Owned by Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, America Movil (Mexico City, Mexico) last week announced plans for a €7.2 billion ($9.56 billion) takeover of the Dutch telecoms incumbent, in which it currently holds a 30% share.

Singtel blames Australia for sales decline, but profits grow

Singaporean telecoms incumbent SingTel has seen a healthy rise in net profit for the three months ending June despite reporting a fall in revenues it blamed on a “more cautious business environment” and weakness in the Australian mobile market.

Singtel’s net income was up by 7%, to SGD1.01 billion ($796 million), compared with the same period of 2012, thanks to the operator’s efforts to cut costs and despite ongoing investments in spectrum, networks and its digital businesses.

MTN adds 12 million customers despite first-half challenges

Pan-African operator MTN Group saw profits and revenues for the first half of the year buoyed by continuing subscriber growth despite pricing pressure across most of its markets.

Profits after tax rose by 19%, to ZAR14.55 billion ($1.46 billion), compared with the same period of 2012, while revenues were up by 9.8%, to ZAR65.25 billion.

Meanwhile, the company’s overall subscriber base grew by 6.5%, compared with end-June 2012, to 201.5 million customers.

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