Telefónica saw revenues and customer numbers rise as it began a financial turnaround in the first three months of the year.

Q1 revenues rose 12.6 percent year-on-year to €11.5 billion, boosted by favourable exchange rates and the performance of recently acquired businesses.

Underlying revenue was also up 3.3 percent due in part to mobile data revenue growth of 31 percent.

Sales continued to fall in Spain, but the decline was less than 12 months ago, mainly thanks to growth in fibre broadband.

Revenues in the operator's home market were down 3.8 percent, versus 4.9 percent in Q1 2014, to €2.9 billion.

Elsewhere in Europe underlying revenues in Germany, where E-Plus is now incorporated into the business, grew by 2.9 percent to €1.9 billion.

The deal to sell O2 UK to Hutchison Whampoa remains at the mercy of regulators, meanwhile.

Sales were also up in Brazil thanks to huge growth in data revenues; turnover increased by over four percent to €2.8 billion.

More growth is expected in the country moving forward as the operator integrates GVT, the fixed-line player it has acquired from Vivendi and which got the regulatory green light in March.

In the rest of Latin America, Telefónica saw underlying revenues increase by 9.7 percent to €3.7 billion.

[Read more: Telefónica teams up with Despegar to offer travel discounts in Lat-Am]

Customer numbers grew in all business units, leaving the operator with 319.1 million subscribers at the end of March.

Fibre customers doubled to 2.1 million, Pay TV customers grew by more than half to 5.5 million, while the number of LTE customers reached 13.7 million.

Net income hit €1.8 billion as a result of the O2 UK sale, but profits from continuing operations were down by almost a quarter.

This was partly due to higher corporate income tax and increased depreciation and amortisation.

Capex rose by more than a quarter to €1.7 billion as the operator looked to modernise exiting networks and deploy new ones.

[Read more: Telefónica picks NetCracker for BSS, customer experience transformation]

Chairman César Alierta said the results “reflect a solid beginning of this new cycle and are leveraged on the improved organic evolution of the business.”

Further, he indicated that Spain “has already begun its return to growth after reporting in the quarter a year-on-year increase in accesses, which will gradually translate into growth in financials”.

 

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