Europe

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  • January 15, 2021

    Roaming charges to return for some: Free EU roaming an optional e [...]

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    • Lockdown 1.0 in March-April-May 2020 reduced mobility in London to 65% of its pre-pandemic baseline, swelling time spent at home. London’s mobility tracked a similar decline to Paris and New York City, all hugely reliant on public transport
    • Easing lockdowns and good weather slowly led to a mobility recovery through the summer and early autumn, but it sharply declined again after November’s Lockdown 2.0. The mobility decline was greatest in the City of London, which is more acutely affected by working from home
    • Each nation in the UK diverged slightly from September due to varying local policies adopted by England, Wales and Scotland to address their public health crises. Notably however, Lockdown 2.0 did not cause mobility to fall to the same degree as late March
  • January 11, 2021

    Serie A TV rights auction: Deflation looms

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    On Monday, Italy’s Serie A issued its call for tender for its broadcasting rights for the 2021-24 cycle, covering three seasons. Bids are due by 26 January. Currently, Sky holds exclusive coverage of seven games per week with the remaining three fixtures carried by DAZN.
  • November 23, 2020

    Vodafone: Bright spots and low lights

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    There are some reasons to be cheerful about Vodafone right now—small nuggets of encouragement in its H1 results and the prospect of some market repair in the UK. Annual in-contract price rises of CPI + 3.9% across the UK mobile sector could provide very valuable support
  • October 7, 2020

    European TV & video subscription platforms: Recovery from lo [...]

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  • September 15, 2020

    European mobile in Q2 2020: Sounding a more cautious note

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    Service revenue growth in the major European markets worsened by 3.5ppts this quarter, as a loss of roaming, prepay, and business revenues hit almost all operators. The UK was hardest hit as prepay and out-of-bundle usage was offloaded to Wif-Fi, and there was an accounting drag as a consequence of the ending of the relationship between O2 and Carphone Warehouse. Conversely, performance in the Italian market was almost flat as prepay usage was up and there was a degree of reprieve from competitive pressures from Iliad. Elsewhere, the French market was hard hit by the loss of inter-continental roaming as far back as February as China began to shut down but other fundamentals appear to be robust. In Germany, O2’s revenue trend was hardest hit but it maintained its strong net adds momentum. While the lockdown provided a break from ‘a very intense promotional environment’ in Spain, that intensity resumed as soon as lockdown lifted with particularly compelling converged bundle offers from Vodafone and Yoigo.
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  • January 9, 2020

    Bopping along the bottom: European mobile in Q3 2019

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    European mobile revenues remain decidedly in decline this quarter at -2% – a slight worsening since Q2 as the full force of cuts to intra EU calls hits. There are signs that dual brand strategies may be reaching their useful limit as erstwhile premium customers shift to value. There is scope for some trends to slowly improve from here, although end of contract notifications will impact all markets before the end of 2020, with the UK first off the blocks in Q1.
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    November 26, 2019

    Turnaround still elusive at Vodafone Europe

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    Vodafone continues to strike a very shareholder-friendly focus and tone but its operating performance remains decidedly muted, with revenue growth up just a touch but EBITDA growth halved. Vodafone’s drive for convergence is still costing it dearly. German mobile ARPU is down 7% and Liberty Global’s assets disappointed on their first consolidation with cashflow enhancement less than half that expected. Apart from its ill-advised convergence strategy, Vodafone is making many sensible moves and there are indications that its unlimited plans are gaining traction. With leverage tight, pressure is mounting for demonstrable improvements in the financials some time very soon.