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Also in today's EMEA regional snapshot: Moody's downgrades KPN; hints of Spotify IPO; EE 4G rolls on.

Eurobites: EU Drops Anti-Dumping Probe Into Huawei, ZTE

Paul Rainford
3/28/2014
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Also in today's EMEA regional snapshot: Moody's downgrades KPN; hints of Spotify IPO; EE 4G rolls on.

  • The European Commission has decided to soften its stance towards Chinese telecom equipment vendors, dropping its proposed anti-dumping case, reports Reuters. It has, however, not dropped the threat of an investigation into illegal subsidies of the likes of Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. and ZTE Corp. (Shenzhen: 000063; Hong Kong: 0763) by the Chinese state. (See Euronews: EC Pushes for Huawei/ZTE Probe and Euronews: EC Sharpens Knives Over Huawei, ZTE.)

  • Moody's Investors Service has downgraded KPN Telecom NV (NYSE: KPN)'s rating to Baa3 from Baa2. In a statement, Moody's said: "Today's downgrade reflects our expectation that KPN's financial ratios will remain weak in 2014-15 with no prospects of recovery in the short-term." KPN has been facing intense pressure in its domestic market, and last October only just managed to see off a takeover bid from América Móvil S.A. de C.V. 's Carlos Slim. (See Euronews: KPN to Axe up to 2,000 Dutch Jobs and Euronews: Slim Abandons KPN Bid.)

  • Spotify , the Sweden-based music streaming service, may be launching an IPO in the fall, reports The Guardian, citing the Quartz website. The company, which has come under fire from some top artists for paying insufficient royalties, has apparently been talking to a number of investment banks, which is being interpreted by some observers as pre-IPO preparation.

  • Portugal Telecom SGPS SA (NYSE: PT)'s planned merger with Brazil's Grupo Oi has hit a speed-bump, reports Reuters, as Brazil's securities watchdog has suspended the offer of shares in Oi for 30 days following a breach of a mandatory "quiet period" by Oi's CEO.

  • UK joint mobile venture EE has brought 4G to 12 more towns, bringing its location count to 187. Towns in Northern Ireland, Wales, Scotland, and England all feature in the latest crop. One of them was Nuneaton -- so let's hear it for Nuneaton! (See EE Adds to Its 4G Coverage in UK and Euronews: EE Hits 2M Mark With 4G.)

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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    PaulERainford
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    PaulERainford,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    3/31/2014 | 4:20:17 AM
    Re: Spotify Up, iTunes Down
    Hall & Oates? Those poor kids - I feel for them, Dan.
    MarkC73
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    MarkC73,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    3/31/2014 | 3:02:25 AM
    Re: Happy record labels
    Depends on your definition of long term.  Nowadays, it seems like it's measured in months not years any more.
    mendyk
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    mendyk,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    3/30/2014 | 12:48:33 PM
    Re: Happy record labels
    IPOs generally are one-time lottery cash-ins, as opposed to a sustainable, long-term business. But you probably are right -- long-term investments are for suckers now.
    DOShea
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    DOShea,
    User Rank: Blogger
    3/30/2014 | 12:11:53 PM
    Happy record labels
    The musicians might be unhappy, but the record labels that have stakes in Spotify must be over-joyed. They must be the ones pushing for an IPO, right?
    DOShea
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    DOShea,
    User Rank: Blogger
    3/30/2014 | 9:30:33 AM
    Re: Spotify Up, iTunes Down
    I hope you're right - I'm planning to pass along a heck of a lot of Hall & Oates records to my kids.
    MarkC73
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    MarkC73,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    3/30/2014 | 9:04:45 AM
    Re: Spotify Up, iTunes Down
    I go out of my way to buy/support the artist's I like.  It all depends whether I'm going to listen/watch it a lot.  If I just want to see a movie once, I'll rent it.  But if there's something that I'm going to use a lot, I'll own it.  I realize for some it comes down to price.  

    For companies to stick around a long time they'll need to make a margin, whether sell or renting.  I guess if a subscription based model really does take over the market share, I'm sure Apple will adjust.
    Kruz
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    Kruz,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    3/29/2014 | 7:30:27 AM
    Spotify everywhere
    I hope this would help Spotify become globally available as it is an amazing service. It would be nice having it in countries where internet speed is not that fast as it runs smoothly on low speed connexions.
    mendyk
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    mendyk,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    3/28/2014 | 4:47:13 PM
    Re: Spotify Up, iTunes Down
    There are tens of millions of people who would disagree with this statement. This is not a binary proposition. Declaring something "dead" because there are other options is kind of silly.
    Mitch Wagner
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    Mitch Wagner,
    User Rank: Lightning
    3/28/2014 | 4:18:02 PM
    Re: Spotify Up, iTunes Down
    The media ownership model is dead for consumers. Consumers don't want to own music or video anymore; they're happy to just subscribe to streaming services or rent what they watch. 
    Jessie Morrow
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    Jessie Morrow,
    User Rank: Lightning
    3/28/2014 | 2:04:18 PM
    Spotify Up, iTunes Down
    Apple is keeping a close eye on music streaming sites such as Spotify as they see their iTunes download business taking a hit while Spotify surges on with deals for college students here in the US and a foray into  Latin America,

    http://www.billboard.com/biz/articles/news/digital-and-mobile/5944778/apple-mulls-launching-spotify-rival-android-app-as

    Yeah maybe this is a good time for Spot togo public.
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