Belgacom sees Q2 improvement as it renews Vodafone agreement

Belgacom reported falling but improving revenues in the second quarter as it extended its partner market agreement with Vodafone. 

Q2 revenues were down 0.9 percent year-on-year to €1.6 billion. The operator’s Consumer business unit saw revenues fall 2.4 percent but this was an improvement on its previous quarter. 

Alongside a €46 million capital gain on building sales, revenues from internet services rose seven percent and mobile device sales were up over 40 percent.

Belgacom now has over 1.5 million TV customers, but the number of active mobile subscribers fell slightly to 3.5 million.

Excluding the May sale of Telindus, the Enterprise business unit was down 0.6 percent as the decline in mobile services revenues was largely stopped thanks to the growth in customer numbers.

Overall, mobile revenues from enterprises were down 0.4 percent while fixed revenues were down over 10 percent.

The operator’s wholesale arm saw revenues decline by 10 percent due to lower regulatory tariffs, but BICS, the international carrier services business, saw sales stabilise after “material win-backs of voice traffic of key customers”

Meanwhile, EBITDA rose 14.3 percent to €491 million, prompting the operator to revise up its expectations for the full year.

CEO Dominique Leroy commented: “Thanks to our efforts to increase the overall customer experience and our successful commercial activities, we managed to keep a strong commercial momentum, in spite of an intense competitive environment. Our growing customer base for TV, Internet and especially mobile, combined with our disciplined pricing strategy, resulted in sound topline trends for both the Consumer and Enterprise segments.

“Furthermore, the implementation of our ‘Fit for Growth’ strategy is also showing in good cost control, leading to a solid underlying EBITDA for the second quarter. Encouragingly, some first structural cost benefits are being realised, bringing us a step closer to our EBITDA growth objectives in 2016.”

Belgacom also announced that it had renewed its Partner Market agreement with Vodafone in Belgium and Luxembourg.

The agreement, which has been running since 2003, has been extended for a further three years.

It allows the customers of both operators to roam on each other’s mobile networks.

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