Vodafone: Withdrawing from Romania, a solution to reduce losses?


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British telecom operator Vodafone could switch away its target from acquisitions to start selling assets where it lacks market leadership and fixed-line infrastructure, Swiss broker house UBS argued, Financial Times informs. Withdrawing from Romania, Australia, Hungary, and the Czech Republic could raise GBP 4 billion, it said.
“Longer term, Vodafone could either be acquired or consider a transformational deal,” said UBS, which named AT&T and SoftBank as logical bidders.
A buyer could be able to draw more quickly on Vodafone’s GBP 63 billion of tax losses held in its Luxembourg holding company, which might be worth 39.2 percent/share, the broker calculated.
UBS saw Vodafone’s biggest market returning to growth within the next few quarters.
“While competition has hindered Vodafone in Germany, its network investment is creating a two-tier market where the cheaper operators will not be able to offer fast connections,” UBS notes.
Vodafone Romania lost, from April to June 2014, almost 92,000 clients, with their total number being 8,567,752, down by 1.05 percent compared to the same period of last year, according to the company’s financial results. As to the consumption of mobile data, it increased by 57 percent in the quarter ended on June 30, compared to the same period a year earlier, whereas the coverage rate of smartphones in the users’ base went up by 5.4 percentage points.

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