Eurobites: Truphone emerges out of sanctions limbo

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: ASML performs well, considering; EU wants to cut 5G red tape; Ericsson in 5G trials with Spark and Red Hat.

Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe

January 25, 2023

3 Min Read
Eurobites: Truphone emerges out of sanctions limbo

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: ASML performs well, considering; EU wants to cut 5G red tape; Ericsson in 5G trials with Spark and Red Hat.

  • Truphone, the UK-based eSIMs specialist, has finally been sold to two European businessmen for £1, ending months of uncertainty for the company. As the Financial Times reports (paywall applies), Hakan Koç, a German businessman, and his associate Pyrros Koussios, sealed the deal on Tuesday after a drawn-out investigation by the UK government into the national security ramifications of the deal. Truphone was previously owned by a consortium that included Roman Abramovich, the Russian oligarch who became subject to sanctions following Russia's invasion of Ukraine. In December the company was also the subject of a bid by co-founder Alexander Straub, which sought to use US$250 million worth of shares in a special-purpose acquisition vehicle. (See UK extends security inquiry into Truphone sale, Eurobites: Truphone gets help with Abramovich problem and What's behind Truphone's $38M eSIMs funding haul.)

    • ASML, a Dutch company that makes its money out of extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUV) machines used in the manufacture of silicon chips, saw net sales worth €21.17 billion ($23 billion) in its 2022 financial year, up from €18.61 billion ($20.21 billion) the year before. This equated to 317 new lithography systems sold, as well as 28 used ones. According to Josep Bori, thematic research director at analytics firm GlobalData, the fourth-quarter results were "very strong, particularly considering the headwinds caused by the US ban on chip technology exports to China and softening consumer demand." (See Tough US export controls could soon extend to ASML gear – report and ASML's China business endangered by US sanctions.)

    • Reuters says it has laid eyes on a European Commission document that sets out the Commission's desire to cut red tape and costs with a view to accelerating the rollout of 5G. The proposals, which form part of something called the Gigabit Infrastructure Act, are due to be announced on February 10, according to the news agency.

    • France-based Ekinops has launched a new line card which it describes as its first coherent transceiver based on 400G pluggable line interfaces. It's called the PM_400FR05-C2A. Could be catchier.

    • Ericsson has completed what it says was a successful 5G standalone (5G SA) trial in New Zealand with local operator Spark and US software vendor Red Hat. Ericsson's 5G core ran on Red Hat's OpenShift platform, integrated with Spark's 5G fixed wireless access (FWA) network. The trial is part of preparations being made by Spark for a large-scale 5G SA rollout at some stage in the future.

    • The European Space Agency has chosen Deutsche Telekom's T-Systems subsidiary to handle data generated by the Copernicus Data Space Ecosystem, the Earth observation component of the EU space program. The data is used to get a better handle on climatic conditions, helping, for example, farmers see where and when water or fertilizer needs to be applied to optimize yields.

    • Africa Data Centres is to build a second data center in Cape Town, South Africa. The new facility will be in the north of the city and will have an IT load of 20MW. Construction is underway, and the facility will be up and running by mid-2024, promises the company.

      — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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About the Author(s)

Paul Rainford

Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

Paul is based on the Isle of Wight, a rocky outcrop off the English coast that is home only to a colony of technology journalists and several thousand puffins.

He has worked as a writer and copy editor since the age of William Caxton, covering the design industry, D-list celebs, tourism and much, much more.

During the noughties Paul took time out from his page proofs and marker pens to run a small hotel with his other half in the wilds of Exmoor. There he developed a range of skills including carrying cooked breakfasts, lying to unwanted guests and stopping leaks with old towels.

Now back, slightly befuddled, in the world of online journalism, Paul is thoroughly engaged with the modern world, regularly firing up his VHS video recorder and accidentally sending text messages to strangers using a chipped Nokia feature phone.

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