Financial

Vodafone's return to growth hints at wider sector recovery

Weak spot in the results was Germany, where it was hit by stiff competition

Reuters

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's Vodafone posted a rise in quarterly sales for the first time in nearly three years on Tuesday in the clearest sign yet that Europe's mobile market is edging towards recovery.

The world's second largest mobile operator has been hit hard by the constraints on consumer spending in its big European markets, fierce competition in India and by regulator-imposed price cuts around the world.

But on Tuesday it finally forecast 2016 core earnings growth on an organic basis following seven straight years of declines.

Cisco profit edges past estimates despite weak telecom spending

Several analysts have interpreted the transition as a signal of changing priorities

Reuters

(Reuters) - Cisco Systems Inc's quarterly profit edged past market estimates as demand for new switches, routers, wireless gear and servers made up for sluggish spending by telecom customers and weak sales in emerging markets.

The network equipment maker is making a transition toward high-end switches and routers and investing in new products such as data analytics software and cloud-management tools.

Last month, market research firm Gartner forecast a decline in telecom services spending this year.

Canada raises more than C$750 million in telecom spectrum auction

Telus Corp emerged as the big winner from the auction

Reuters

TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian government said on Tuesday it had raised C$755.4 million ($627.77 million) in a 2500-megahertz spectrum auction set to boost telecom coverage in rural areas across the vast country.

Telus Corp, one of Canada's three biggest telecom companies, emerged as the big winner from the auction. It paid C$478.8 million for 122 licenses across the country, snagging over 40 percent of the licenses sold through the auction.

Enel offers to help build Italy's fibre broadband network

Move could bring utility company into conflict with Telecom Italia

Reuters

MILAN/ROME (Reuters) - Italian power utility Enel has written to the Italian communications regulator offering to help with building a nationwide ultrafast broadband telecoms network, a move that could bring it into conflict with Telecom Italia.

Enel, which is controlled by the Italian government, wrote a letter to the regulator on April 14 saying its domestic network could be used to help install fibre optic cables more cheaply.

Chinese smartphone market, world's largest, shrinks in first-quarter: study

In Q1 2015, smartphone shipments in China shrank for the first time in six years

Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) - China's smartphone market has reached saturation, according to a new study by industry analyst IDC that carries potentially significant implications for the global handset industry led by giants like Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd.

During the first quarter of 2015, smartphone shipments in the world's most populous country shrank for the first time in six years to 98.8 million, down 4.3 percent from a year earlier, IDC said in report on a Monday, attributing the slump to "market saturation".

Spain's Telefonica bets on price hikes to end six-year slump

Higher rates to take effect on May 5, should add up to 300 million euros

Reuters

MADRID (Reuters) - Telefonica's move to hike prices in Spain is a bold bet that could finally draw a line under a six-year slump, cut the firm's reliance on Latin America and give it a leg up over rivals on the lucrative premium telecoms market, sources and analysts say.

The telecoms giant, whose revenues have dropped 13 percent worldwide and 42 percent in Spain since 2008, has focused on fewer markets, cut debt and invested in new high-speed networks and exclusive television contents to try and regain its mojo.

TMT Finance and Investment Africa 2015

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Tuesday, June 23, 2015
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The 6th TMT Finance & Investment Africa 2015 Conference takes place at the Millennium Hotel Mayfair, London on June 23, 2015.

Nokia's network profits drop, raise concerns over Alcatel deal

Ranks of investors betting against Alcatel-Lucent appear to be growing

Reuters

HELSINKI/PARIS (Reuters) - Finland's Nokia reported quarterly profits well below market forecasts at its telecom network equipment business, sending its stock tumbling 10 percent and raising concerns over its planned takeover of smaller rival Alcatel-Lucent.

First-quarter revenue was ahead of expectations, but operating profit dropped 61 percent, which Nokia blamed largely on the need to cut prices to secure major mobile contracts in China and on weaker software sales.

Nokia bets software revolution will help avoid past merger errors

Getting the transition right is essential to achieving the synergies and avoiding alienating major customers

Reuters

PARIS/HELSINKI/STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Nokia's acquisition of smaller rival Alcatel-Lucent may avoid the pitfalls that befell earlier telecom network equipment marriages, thanks to a revolution over the past decade in how products are launched and developed.

The brains and brawn of telecom networks today lie in software, which is programmable and flexible, and not in customized hardware as in the past. Products are more modular with open interfaces that allow equipment from different manufacturers to talk to each other.

Arris to buy British set-top box maker Pace in $2.1 billion deal

Deal comes as OTT disrupts traditional video service industry

Reuters

(Reuters) - Network gear maker Arris Group Inc said it would buy British set-top box maker Pace Plc in a $2.1 billion cash-and-stock deal to expand its operations outside North America.

The deal, which involves the creation of a new company that will be incorporated in the UK, will help Arris reduce corporate taxes.

Arris said the deal will reduce its non-GAAP tax rate to about 26-28 percent. The company's tax rate was 36.8 percent in 2014.

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