& cplSiteName &

ONO Says Yes to Vodafone

Ray Le Maistre
3/17/2014
50%
50%

Vodafone has dipped into its fat wallet, swelled by the recent sale of its US assets, and struck a €7.2 billion (US$10 billion) deal to buy Spanish cable operator ONO, the two companies announced Monday morning, ending weeks of speculation. (See Vodafone to Buy ONO for €7.2B and Vodafone Agrees to $130B Verizon Stake Sale.)

The deal, which carries no debt or cash, adds 1.9 million customers (including about 120,000 small businesses) to Vodafone's operation in Spain, where it already has 13.6 million mobile customers and where it is building out fiber-based fixed broadband connections to 1.5 million Spanish homes. The deal will also swell Vodafone's headcount by about 2,500 staff. (See Euronews: €1B Boost for Spanish FTTH.)

Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) aims to take advantage of ONO 's relatively modern network infrastructure, in which the Spanish operator has invested €7 billion ($9.74 billion) since 1998, and sell bundled services to the 7.2 million homes passed by ONO's access network. ONO has upgraded its entire network to DOCSIS 3.0 and offers cable broadband at speeds in excess of 200 Mbit/s, while its video service includes a Tivo-based option. Vodafone is in the process of upgrading its Spanish mobile network to 4G LTE. (See Euronews: Vodafone Wins Spain's 4G Race, TiVo Surpasses 2.5 Million Subscribers in Europe, and ONO Will Go Full Throttle.)

ONO, which was set for an IPO and which has also attracted acquisition interest from European cable giant Liberty Global Inc. (Nasdaq: LBTY), generated revenues of €1.6 billion ($2.23 billion) and reported a slight net loss of €25 million ($34.8 million) in 2013. (See Euronews: Vodafone Homes In On ONO.)

The ONO acquisition deal had been expected by the financial markets, and so has had little impact on the mobile operator's stock. Vodafone, which has more than 410 million mobile customers worldwide, and which generated revenues of £11 billion ($18.3 billion) in its fiscal third quarter that ended December 31, 2013, saw its share price rise by 3 pence, or 1.3%, to 225 pence on the London Stock Exchange at lunchtime.

The ONO deal is the latest move in a battle between Vodafone and Liberty Global to dominate the European cable services market. (See Euronews: Rivals Set for Cable Asset Battle.)

Liberty is seeking economies of scale from acquisitions such as Virgin Media in the UK and Ziggo in the Netherlands, while also seeking to add its own mobile services to its existing triple-play packages. (See Euronews: Liberty Global Plans Pan-European MVNO, Liberty Global to Buy Ziggo for €10B, and Liberty Makes $23.3B Play for Virgin Media.)

Vodafone, meanwhile, is seeking to combine its mobile, fiber-based fixed broadband, and enterprise services with cable network assets that can add video delivery, additional high-speed broadband, and data transport (including mobile backhaul) capabilities to its European assets. The mobile giant recently completed the acquisition of cable operator Kabel Deutschland GmbH , a move that gives it more than 32 million mobile subscribers, around 5 million broadband, and 7.6 million cable TV customers in Germany. (See Euronews: Vodafone Clears Hurdle to Kabel Bid and Vodafone Germany And Kabel Deutschland Integration To Begin From 1 April 2014.)

— Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile

(4)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
albreznick
50%
50%
albreznick,
User Rank: Blogger
3/18/2014 | 9:02:59 PM
Re: Competitive landscape
good question, Mitch. It should boost the competitive landscape in voth Spain and all of Europe, especially if it keeps Liberty Global from being an even bigger goliath than it already is. .  
albreznick
50%
50%
albreznick,
User Rank: Blogger
3/18/2014 | 9:01:22 PM
Re: What's in an acronym?
It probably doesn't have quite the same meaning in Spanish. So I doubt they worried about that. :) 
Mitch Wagner
50%
50%
Mitch Wagner,
User Rank: Lightning
3/17/2014 | 12:49:14 PM
Competitive landscape
Will this deal have a significant effect on the competitive landscape in Spain? In Europe in general? Sounds like ONO was a relatively small company, with some technology that might be significantly helpful to Vodafone, making the acqusition an improvement for competition. 
Ariella
50%
50%
Ariella,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/17/2014 | 10:55:17 AM
What's in an acronym?
I wonder didn't ONO do any market research that warned the company off adopting a name that sounds like, Oh no? They could have adopted Mr. Bill as their mascot. 
From The Founder
Kicking off BCE 2017, Light Reading founder Steve Saunders lays blame for NFV's slow ramp-up and urges telecom to return to old-fashioned standards building and interoperability.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Interviews
CenturyLink: Let's Get Past SD-WAN Hype

6|23|17   |   04:02   |   (0) comments


Technology becomes a "shiny object" unless it's properly focused on solving business needs for enterprise customers, says Bill Grubbs, network solutions architect for CenturyLink. He explains to Light Reading why SD-WAN deployments have to be tailored to specific needs – and more.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Infinera's Sales Director Paints Tech's Big Picture

6|21|17   |   4:14   |   (1) comment


Shannon Williams, Infinera's director of sales, shares how she achieves work's many balancing acts -- between her role and the broader company, today and tomorrow's tech and more.
LRTV Custom TV
SD-WAN Innovation & Trends

6|20|17   |     |   (0) comments


Versa CEO Kelly Ahuja discusses with Carol Wilson the current status and trends in the SD-WAN market, Versa's innovation around building a software platform with broad contextualization, and the advantages that startups can bring to the SD-WAN market.
LRTV Interviews
Ovum's Dario Talmesio on 5G in Europe

6|20|17   |   02:16   |   (0) comments


At 5G World 2017, Dario Talmesio, principal analyst and practice leader on Ovum's fixed and mobile telecoms European team, explains the emerging trends amongst European operators as they prepare for 5G.
LRTV Custom TV
Putting Power on a Pedestal

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


ARRIS's John Ulm says a major accomplishment of SCTE•ISBE's Energy 2020 program is increased focus on power cost and consumption, including inclusion of energy requirements in operators' RFPs and RFIs.
LRTV Custom TV
Gigabit Access: The Last-Mile Pipe for All Future Services

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


A Gigabit access platform being deployed today must be able to deliver all types of services to an increasing number of devices. A non-blocking architecture is necessary to support the ever-increasing growth in bandwidth demand. The Huawei Gigabit access solution is based on a distributed design that is fully scalable to deliver a unprecedented performance.
LRTV Custom TV
Key Factors to Successfully Deploy an SD-WAN Service

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


As service providers transition their SD-WAN solution from trials and limited deployments into production at large scale, there are important considerations to successfully operationalize these solutions and realize their full potential, without adding complexity, introducing uncertainty or disrupting current business operations. Sunil Khandekar, CEO and Founder ...
LRTV Custom TV
IoT Solutions: Rational Exuberance

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


IoT solutions are morphing from hype into viable business opportunities. Huawei has the platform and ecosystem support to help carriers successfully address new business opportunities in the IoT space.
LRTV Custom TV
Realizing ICN as a Network Slice for Mobile Data Distribution

6|19|17   |     |   (1) comment


Network slicing in 5G allows the potential introduction of new network architectures such as Information-centric Networks (ICN) as a slice, managed over a shared pool of compute, storage and bandwidth resource. Services over an ICN slice can benefit from many architectural features such as Name Based Networking, Security, Multicasting, Multi-homing, Mobility, ...
LRTV Interviews
Ovum's Mike Roberts on 5G Uptake

6|19|17   |   04:08   |   (0) comments


Mike Roberts, research director for Ovum's service provider markets group, explains why he has boosted his 5G subscriptions forecast.
LRTV Interviews
AT&T's Hubbard on Intersection of SD-WAN & MPLS

6|15|17   |     |   (0) comments


Rick Hubbard, SVP of Network Product Management for AT&T Business Solutions, discusses how AT&T's approach to SD-WAN fits in with its overall virtualization strategy, explains how SD-WAN can improve enterprise customers' use of the cloud and addresses the intersection of SD-WAN and MPLS.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Keep Connected IoT Devices Under Control With Allot

6|15|17   |     |   (0) comments


Allot AVP of International Pre-Sales, Daniel Keidar, explains how communications service providers can protect infrastructure and service availability from flooding attacks caused by malfunctioning or bot-infected devices connected to their network.
Upcoming Live Events
October 18, 2017, Colorado Convention Center - Denver, CO
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Netflix's Lesson in Culture Expectation Settings
Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms, 6/21/2017
No Imagination: UK Chip Biz Goes Up for Sale
Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/22/2017
Kalanick Steps Down as Uber CEO
Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms, 6/21/2017
BT Tech Chief Makes Plea to 5G Chip Vendors
Ray Le Maistre, International Group Editor, 6/20/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Following a recent board meeting, the New IP Agency (NIA) has a new strategy to help accelerate the adoption of NFV capabilities, explains the Agency's Founder and Secretary, Steve Saunders.
One of the nice bits of my job (other than the teeny tiny salary, obviously) is that I get to pick and choose who I interview for this slot on the Light Reading home ...
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.