|Bid||162.56 x 0|
|Ask||162.94 x 0|
|Day's Range||160.48 - 165.40|
|52 Week Range||122.22 - 171.78|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||0.59|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||N/A|
|Earnings Date||Nov 12, 2019|
|Forward Dividend & Yield||0.08 (4.95%)|
|1y Target Est||2.01|
European stocks edged higher on Tuesday ahead of a critical speech on China trade relations from President Donald Trump, supported by generally well-received earnings.
KKR has sold out of Trainline in double-quick time. Trainline’s other private equity backers, Index Ventures, Ares and Alven Capital, have also got out. The price KKR and others got for the rump of their Trainline shares is less than the price at which they sold two months ago — then they bagged 435p a share, now only 410p.
Vodafone said its future in India could be in doubt unless the government stopped hitting operators with higher taxes and charges, after a court judgment over license fees resulted in a 1.9 billion euro group loss in its first half. Chief Executive Nick Read said India, where Vodafone formed a joint venture with Idea Cellular in 2018, had been "a very challenging situation for a long time", but it remained a sizable market where Vodafone had a 30% share. Vodafone had asked the government for a relief package comprising a two-year moratorium on spectrum payments, lower license fee and taxes and waiving of interest and penalties on the Supreme Court case, which centred on regulatory fees.
(Bloomberg) -- Want the lowdown on European markets? In your inbox before the open, every day. Sign up here.Vodafone Group Plc returned to sales growth in the second quarter as its toughest European market of Spain showed signs of improvement, in a boost for Chief Executive Officer Nick Read. Its shares rose as much as 3.2% Organic service revenue grew 0.7%, above the 0.2% forecast by analysts. It follows two quarters of declines. Vodafone also upgraded its full-year earnings guidance.Key InsightsRead needs some decent sales growth to generate cash for network investments and service debts built up with Vodafone’s purchase of Liberty Global Plc assets.South Africa, Italy and Spain all improved as Vodafone faced tough competition from former phone monopolies and no-frills challengers. The company said it had the best ever quarter for new customers in the U.K.Read said he expects to build upon the revenue growth in the second half of the year in both Europe and Africa.The company toned down its guidance on full-year free cashflow, while boosting its forecast for earnings after the Liberty Global deal.Market ReactionVodafone shares were up 2.5% as of 8:30 a.m. in London. The stock has risen 14% in the past year, outpacing a 5% rise in the Stoxx 600 Telecommunications Index, as investors welcomed Read’s plans to collaborate more with rivals on infrastructure to cut costs.NOTE: Vodafone CEO’s Wild First Year Leaves Stock Where It StartedOn Monday, 17 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg rated the stock a buy, six hold and two sell.Get MoreThe company made a loss in its Indian business after a court ordered it to pay a spectrum fee. It now sees group free cash flow of “around” 5.4 billion euros versus previous guidance of “at least” 5.4 billion. Vodafone sees adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization of 14.8 billion euros to 15 billion euros, up from its previous guidance of 13.8 billion to 14.2 billion.Company statementNOTE: BT Drops as Liberty Global Switches to Vodafone for Mobile(Updates with share price rise. A previous version of this story was corrected to fix the revenue growth figure.)To contact the reporter on this story: Thomas Seal in London at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Rebecca Penty at firstname.lastname@example.org, Thomas PfeifferFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Vodafone has upgraded its profit guidance for the year by up to €1bn despite slumping to a loss in the first half as a result of its Indian turmoil. Group chief executive Nick Read and chairman Gerard Kleisterlee travelled to India last month to ask the government for a series of “relief” measures to ensure Vodafone Idea, which has 300m customers, does not collapse as a result of the penalty. Vodafone has spent €19bn in India since it entered the market in 2007 but will not inject more capital into the local unit having merged it with Idea.
Vodafone has struck a deal with BT to use its network to offer broadband to up to half a million customers in three British cities. BT, via its Openreach network unit, is under pressure to upgrade rapidly Britain’s copper telephone lines to “full fibre” connections but needs to bring millions of customers who use other broadband brands on board to justify the cost. to offer “gigabit” speed broadband to all UK premises by 2025 if certain conditions are met.
This week we have important US speeches from Donald Trump and Jay Powell. German gross domestic product is also out, which could reveal the eurozone’s biggest economy fell into recession in the last quarter. Spain will begin the week looking to form a government after Sunday’s elections, over in the US public hearings in the impeachment inquiry into President Trump are due to start on Wednesday, and Singles’ Day — the biggest event in the Asian retail calendar — is on Monday.
Tom Watson, deputy leader of Britain's Labour Party, said on Wednesday, he is standing down from both his frontline position and parliament at the forthcoming general election. UK's Prime Minister Boris Johnson has launched his general election campaign with a promise to deliver Brexit by January, to champion Britain's free market economy and to preside over a "moderate and compassionate" government. Britain's Virgin Media is ditching BT Group's mobile network for rival Vodafone Group Plc from late 2021 in a five-year deal that will allow it to launch new services such as 5G to its more than 3 million customers.
Britain's Virgin Media is ditching BT's mobile network for rival Vodafone from late 2021 in a five-year deal that will allow it to launch new services such as 5G to its more than 3 million customers. Virgin Media, which offers cable TV and broadband services, pioneered the mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) model, whereby a company offers own-branded mobile on an established partner's network. It has used BT's EE network for nearly 20 years, including before BT owned it, but its customers will be switched onto Vodafone's network in 2021 after the company won the new contract.
(Bloomberg) -- India won’t back down from collecting $13 billion of past dues from debt-laden telecom carriers because the industry is not under stress, a government official with knowledge of the matter said, a move that could deepen Bharti Airtel Ltd. and Vodafone Idea Ltd.’s financial woes.India expects the carriers to pay up within 90 days as ordered by the Supreme Court last month, the official said, asking not to be identified, as the discussions are private. A panel of top bureaucrats could look at deferred payment plan for some of the dues, the person said.The government’s stand about the health of the industry mirrors comments made by billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd., which has said it has a “divergent view” from its rivals. High fees, frequent flip-flops and endless tax demands over the years have driven most operators aground. From over 10 operators few years ago, India has just three non-state players left with two of them saddled with a mountain of debt.Vodafone Group Plc’s Indian venture has $14 billion worth of obligations, while Bharti Airtel is rated junk by Moody’s Investors Service. “All telecom operators have asked for requisite help in reducing” the financial stress, Vodafone Idea said last month.The “extraordinary scenario” being shown is “just a machination to extract relief,” Reliance Jio said in a letter to the minister of communications on Oct. 31.Bharti Airtel’s shares fell 3.3% in Mumbai on Wednesday. Vodafone Idea lost 8.3% while Reliance Industries Ltd. slid 0.9%. The benchmark S&P BSE Sensex rose 0.6%.In the latest instance, the court ordered operators to pay dues using a disputed method for calculating the annual adjusted gross revenue, a share of which is paid as license and spectrum fees. It upheld the government’s method that includes income from non-telecom businesses like dividend from income and capital gains from the sale of assets while rejecting a plea to exclude them.Spectrum PaymentStill, the official said the government is working on a plan to reduce the license fee and providing a two-year moratorium on pending spectrum payments. The proposal will be sent to the finance ministry first before it is taken up by the cabinet, the official said, adding that this may happen in the current financial year.The telecom ministry spokesman didn’t immediately respond to requests for a comment.A panel of senior government officials is examining feasibility of deferring payment for airwaves that are due by March 2021 and March 2022 as demanded by telecom companies, a government official told reporters last week. It will also consider the demand for reduction in spectrum usage levies and the Universal Service Obligation Fund charge.On the introduction of 5G airwaves, the official said there will be no delay in auction, which is due this financial year, and that the government isn’t presuming the telecom sector is under stress. The reserve price for 5G spectrum will not be lowered, he said.India has fallen behind China and some other countries in plans to introduce 5G, super fast networks seen as essential to developing factory automation, autonomous driving and other artificial intelligence applications.(Update with share performance in sixth paragraph)To contact the reporter on this story: Ragini Saxena in Mumbai at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Arijit Ghosh at firstname.lastname@example.org, Unni Krishnan, Sam NagarajanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Virgin Media is to transfer its 3m mobile customers to Vodafone’s network, calling time on its £200m-a-year deal with BT. The cable group currently uses BT’s mobile network EE in a contract that runs until 2021. Virgin will also launch 5G services via the Vodafone network before then.
INWIT, the mast group controlled by Telecom Italia , still expects to wrap up a deal with Vodafone to merge their tower infrastructure in Italy in the first part of next year, INWIT's head said on Tuesday. Last week Telecom Italia, INWIT and Vodafone agreed to postpone by a month to Nov.30 a deadline to get EU antitrust approval for the deal. "We're engaged in very constructive talks with the European antitrust", INWIT CEO Giovanni Ferigo said on a conference call with analysts.
(Bloomberg) -- When Arun Sarin, Vodafone Group Plc’s India-born former CEO, was charting the British telecommunications firm’s expansion into emerging markets in the mid-2000s, his home country with more than a billion potential phone users seemed a compelling choice.Sarin wasn’t alone. Norway’s Telenor ASA, Russia’s Mobile TeleSystems PJSC and Malaysia’s Maxis Bhd were also among a slew of companies that flocked to this fast-growing market. The carriers banded with local partners, bid for airwaves and licenses, spending billions of dollars to prepare their networks.But what once appeared to be their most-promising Asian wireless market has turned sour. Vodafone’s Indian venture with billionaire Kumar Mangalam Birla, saddled with $14 billion of debt, is said to be seeking to revamp its borrowings amid mounting losses and a tariff war. Tycoon Sunil Mittal’s Bharti Airtel Ltd. is rated junk by Moody’s Investors Service. In a market that had a dozen carriers two years ago, just three are left standing today -- two of them, barely.High fees, frequent policy flip-flops, endless tax demands from an unsympathetic bureaucracy that treated carriers as cash cows have driven most of the operators aground. The industry has become the latest cautionary tale for investors in India, showing why despite moving up the global rankings for ease of business, the burgeoning $2.7 trillion economy with a massive consumer base remains a tough, unpredictable place for those who still dare.The latest blow to the survivors came last week. The nation’s Supreme Court, ruling on a years-long dispute, ordered several carriers to pay the government an additional $13 billion in past fees. The British firm’s venture, Vodafone Idea Ltd., faces a bill of $4 billion, a burden that could sink the company.“The government is becoming greedy and extracting the maximum from them,” said Mohan Guruswamy, a former finance ministry official and now chairman of the Centre for Policy Alternatives in New Delhi. “The whole sector is in the doldrums. This judgment will effectively destroy Vodafone Idea, and what you’ll have is an emerging duopoly.”When India announced its New Telecom Policy in 1999, it said the industry was of “vital importance” with “widespread ramifications on the entire economy,” and vowed to create an “enabling framework for the development” of telecommunications.Record RakingWhile that worked in theory, policy makers also realized that the auction of airwaves and sale of licenses could fetch billions of dollars, a revenue source key to narrowing the government’s budget deficit. For instance, in a 2015 auction, India raised a record $18 billion, after getting almost $10 billion in the previous year. But in 2012, a plan to collect as much as 400 billion rupees ($7.3 billion at the then exchange rate) flopped as bidders balked, prompting it to cut prices later.Spectrum costs in India are among the highest in the world, according to data compiled by Analysys Mason Spectrum Tracker. The leading telecom operators in India pay the largest share of their aggregate revenue for airwaves at 7.6%, followed by Thailand at 7.3% and Bangladesh at 7%, according to Moody’s Investors Service.Driving Up CostsWhile the government set high prices, the carriers had themselves to blame too. Competition drove the operators to outbid each other at spectrum auctions, driving up their costs.As a result, companies took on billions of dollars in debt to stay in the game even as competition among a dozen operators for a slice of the market drove down tariffs to less than a cent, weighing on their earnings. Then came Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. in 2016, offering free calls and cheap data on its 4G network, backed by the deep pockets of billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s oil-to-petrochemicals empire.Jio’s entry shook up the industry that was already hobbling.In the past two years, two of India’s larger telecom operators -- Malaysian tycoon T. Ananda Krishnan’s Aircel Ltd., and Anil Ambani’s Reliance Communications Ltd. -- went into bankruptcy. Vodafone’s India unit announced its merger with Birla’s Idea Cellular Ltd. in 2017 to take on Jio, but it has reported losses every quarter since.“The Indian telecom market had three major challenges,” said Sanjay Kapoor, former CEO of Bharti Airtel’s India and South Asia operations and now a director on the board of Saudi Telecom Co. “Intense competition, high cost structure with exorbitant spectrum prices coupled with government charges and lowest average revenue per user.”But there were other equally daunting hurdles too. Some examples of policy flip-flops here:A decade after its struggle in India, Newbury, England-based Vodafone Group has one foot out the door. CEO Nick Read said in September that the company isn’t keen to plow any more money into the local venture, in which Vodafone holds about 44%. A Vodafone Group spokesman declined to comment for this story, while Idea said Thursday that it isn’t aware if its British partner is looking to exit India.Former Vodafone CEO Sarin didn’t immediately respond to requests for comments.Warned LendersVodafone Idea has approached creditors for better terms, including a temporary halt to payments, and has warned lenders it won’t be able to honor its commitments for long under current conditions, people with direct knowledge of the matter said. The company denied making such a move, but said “all telecom operators have asked for requisite help in reducing” the financial stress. Shares of Vodafone Idea have tumbled 81% this year following a 65% slump in 2018.Following the Supreme Court ruling on the extra fees, Bharti Airtel deferred its quarterly earnings announcement by two weeks to Nov. 14. Fitch Ratings said Oct. 30 that it’s placed Bharti on negative watch at BBB-, the lowest investment grade.The court order is the “last straw,” the Cellular Operators Association of India said last week, while Bharti and Vodafone Idea urged the government to address their concerns and mitigate their financial stress.Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government said this week that it is considering some relief measures. A panel of senior bureaucrats will look into steps including deferment of airwaves payments that are due by March 2021 and 2022.“The government on its end is in a difficult position where if it lets Vodafone Idea fail, it will lead to a duopoly, which is not the healthiest market structure for any country,” said Rohan Dhamija, head of South Asia and Middle East at Analysys Mason. “We, hence, feel that the government might step in with subtle help for the sector.”(Updates with Vodafone Idea’s stock decline in 2019)\--With assistance from Bibhudatta Pradhan, Dave McCombs and Thomas Seal.To contact the reporters on this story: P R Sanjai in Mumbai at email@example.com;Ragini Saxena in Mumbai at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Sam Nagarajan at email@example.com, Bhuma ShrivastavaFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") has today assigned a B2 rating to VZ Vendor Financing B.V.'s proposed EUR500 million worth of senior unsecured vendor financing notes (VFNs) due 2024. The outlook on the rating is negative. All other ratings of the VodafoneZiggo Group B.V. (VodafoneZiggo) remain unchanged.
Loss-making Indian mobile carrier Vodafone Idea said on Friday it will ask the central government for relief on payments of at least $4 billion after a court ruling required it to pay overdue levies and interest. India's Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a demand by the country's Department of Telecommunications (DoT) that wireless carriers pay nearly $13 in overdue levies and interest. Vodafone Idea and rival Bharti Airtel Ltd reported losses for the quarter to June, hit by a price war that began after conglomerate Reliance Industries launched its Jio telecoms arm in 2016 with free voice and cut-price data services.
Britain's four mobile network operators have agreed to build a shared rural network, backed by government funds, banishing countryside "not-spots" where consumers are unable to get an adequate signal. EE, Vodafone, O2 and Three will collectively spend 532 million pounds ($684 million) over 20 years, according to the plan published on Friday, potentially supported by a 500 million pound investment from the government. The operators would invest in new and existing phone masts they would all share under the proposal, which the government hopes will be formalized early next year.
Both Vodafone and MasMovil denied a report by the El Confidencial news website saying the Spanish mobile operator was working with Goldman Sachs to buy the British telecom's business in Spain for 6 billion euros ($6.67 billion). MasMovil and Goldman Sachs have held talks with the world's second largest mobile operator regarding its Spanish business, the Spanish website reported, citing unnamed sources close to the talks. El Confidencial said MasMovil, which has grown significantly in recent years via acquisitions in many cases financed by the U.S. investment bank, last summer submitted a non-binding offer rejected by Vodafone, which instead asked for 8 billion euros for its Spanish unit.
(Bloomberg) -- Billionaire cable mogul John Malone’s plan for a $6.4 billion sale of UPC Switzerland fell apart after would-be purchaser Sunrise Communications AG concluded its shareholders won’t support the move.Sunrise Chief Executive Officer Olaf Swantee said Tuesday in an interview that the deal was “dead.” The company had earlier called off a shareholder vote scheduled for Wednesday on a rights offering to fund the purchase. UPC parent Liberty Global Plc has yet to say it has walked away.Liberty Global Chairman Malone had agreed in February to sell the unit, raising the prospect that he would rake in a heftier cash pile to support a range of activities, including potential shareholder payouts and acquisitions in western Europe. But Freenet AG, Sunrise’s biggest investor, railed against the purchase price and an influential proxy advisor came out against the deal, wiping out the possibility of success.This is the second setback this year for the man who sold cable provider Tele-Communications Inc. to AT&T Inc. for $48 billion in 1999 -- his attempted purchase of Millicom International Cellular SA fell apart in January on price concerns. Liberty Global shareholders may also need to recalibrate their expectations for the prices they can expect for future transactions.“Malone’s not had many failures in his career and this is a reputational setback if nothing else,” said Mirabaud analyst Neil Campling. “Liberty Global may have to reset some of its ambitions around the values it can achieve for future M&A.”The transaction, which would have created a bigger player to compete against Swisscom AG, valued UPC at 10 times adjusted earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortization. Sunrise had agreed to finance the deal through a mix of debt and about 4.1 billion Swiss francs ($4.2 billion) raised from a rights issue. Freenet balked at this mix. Eventually the rights issue was cut to 2.8 billion Swiss francs, and last week Liberty Global pledged as much as 500 million francs to support the capital increase.These changes weren’t enough to earn the approval of proxy advisor Institutional Shareholder Services, which said a fair value range for UPC was 4.6 billion Swiss francs to 5.2 billion Swiss francs.Examining OptionsLiberty Global is still examining its options within the current share purchase agreement, said a spokesman for the company. That agreement expires Feb. 27.An attempt by Liberty Latin America to take over Millicom for $7.6 billion in cash and stock fell through after the target’s executives were said to have demanded changes to the terms of the transaction, including a higher premium and cash component. The unwinding of the Swiss effort -- Freenet CEO Christoph Vilanek said in a phone interview Tuesday that there’s no way to rescue it -- sends a signal to European companies considering participating in industry consolidation.An end to the deal “probably tells telecom management in Europe that paying a 10 to 12 times Ebitda multiple on a transaction isn’t getting support from investors,” Stephane Beyazian, analyst at Mainfirst, said Monday.Sunrise shares rose as much as 4.6%, the most since Jan. 3, while Liberty Global’s Class A shares sank as much as 5.5% in early New York trading, the biggest drop since May. Standalone StrategySwantee said Sunrise has no immediate plans to consider alternative acquisitions, and the company will revert to its standalone strategy, “which fortunately has been working well.”He said earlier this month that a management shake-up at the Swiss company was likely if the deal doesn’t go through. When asked Tuesday if he would quit, he said “our priority now is to stabilize the company.”Swantee will have to do so in a competitive environment that has Swiss carriers locked in an aggressive discounting war. The UPC purchase would have eased pricing pressure by reducing the number of players.“The cancellation is a consistent step given the shareholder resistance, but also a missed opportunity to consolidate the Swiss telecom market,” said Mark Diethelm, analyst at Vontobel Securities.Liberty Global is not short of cash - it will still have about $9 billion in proceeds from sales of businesses to Vodafone Group Plc and Deutsche Telekom AG, said Pivotal Research analyst Jeff Wlodarczak.Tuesday’s outcome may complicate other potential deals at London-based Liberty Global, such as acquisitions involving partially-owned Belgian unit Telenet or a Dutch joint venture with Vodafone.Telefonica SA’s British mobile-only company O2 has long been speculated as a neat fit for the fixed-line-only network at Virgin Media, which now makes up the majority of Liberty Global’s sales. Meanwhile, Liberty executives are preparing to spend money extending their U.K. broadband reach in a land-grab against BT Group Plc.UPC Switzerland has been Liberty Global’s worst-performing unit, and Malone could attempt to find another partner -- Salt, the mobile operator controlled by French billionaire Xavier Niel, is a potential candidate.“It seems to us that an absence of compromise and trust sank this deal,” Berenberg analyst Usman Ghazi wrote in a note. “Liberty Global was unwilling to address the legitimate grievances of Sunrise shareholders. Those who intended to vote against it were merely saying that the merger need not be pursued at any price, and this was a judgment call that we sympathized with.”(Updates with Liberty Global shares)\--With assistance from Stefan Nicola.To contact the reporters on this story: Albertina Torsoli in Geneva at firstname.lastname@example.org;Thomas Seal in London at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Rebecca Penty at firstname.lastname@example.org, Anne PollakFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") has today withdrawn Unitymedia GmbH's (Unitymedia or the company) B1 corporate family rating (CFR) and B1-PD probability of default rating (PDR). Please refer to the Moody's Investors Service Policy for Withdrawal of Credit Ratings, available on its website, www.moodys.com.
If you want to know who really controls Vodafone Group Plc (LON:VOD), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its...