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Swisscom profit rises on Fastweb growth, declines comment on Vodafone talks

2024 02 08T083252Z 2 LYNXMPEK17074 RTROPTP 4 SWISSCOM RESULTS - Global Banking | Finance

Swisscom profit rises on Fastweb growth, declines comment on Vodafone talks

By Mateusz Dobrzyniewski and Anastasiia Kozlova

(Reuters) -Swisscom met expectations with a 4.9% rise in full-year core profit on Thursday boosted by growth in its Fastweb business in Italy.

Fastweb is seeing accelerating growth in its customer base, with revenue from both business and wholesale customers increasing despite lagging broadband demand in a tough market environment.

Telecoms groups in Italy are exploring opportunities to consolidate a market grappling with shrinking revenue and margins.

Britain’s Vodafone on Monday said it was in “active discussions” about a deal in Italy, after rejecting an offer from rival Iliad last month in favour of pursuing other options.

Sources have said one of those options is a deal with Swisscom’s Fastweb.

A Swisscom spokesperson declined to comment on the matter in an email to Reuters, saying the company would not publish any additional statements on Thursday.

The group posted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of 4.62 billion Swiss francs ($5.29 billion) in 2023 while analysts had expected 4.61 billion, a company-compiled consensus showed.

The former state telecoms monopoly said business in Italy continued to develop positively, with a 6.1% year-on-year increase in Fastweb’s revenue to 2.63 billion euros ($2.84 billion).

For 2024, Swisscom expects revenue of around 11.00 billion Swiss francs, compared with 11.07 billion last year. It forecast annual EBITDA in a range of 4.5 billion to 4.6 billion francs.

The company said it would propose a dividend of 22 francs per share for 2023, unchanged from a year earlier.

($1 = 0.8731 Swiss francs)

($1 = 0.9275 euros)

(Reporting by Mateusz Dobrzyniewski and Anastasiia Kozlova in Gdansk; Editing by Milla Nissi and Jacqueline Wong)

 

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