Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Hungary's data tax; Transmode slumps; Lumia to lose the Nokia.
Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. has announced it is planning to step up its procurement spend in Europe, predicting that it will make purchases of goods and services worth US$4.08 billion in 2015, compared with $3.4 billion in 2013. It also plans to hire 5,500 more staff in Europe over the next five years and double its R&D headcount in the next three years. Huawei currently has around 7,700 employees in Europe and 17 R&D sites. (See Huawei Plans Greater Procurement Spend in Europe.)
Hungary, which has made something of a habit of slapping special taxes on business, is now planning to lumber Internet service providers and telcos with a new tax on data transfers, Reuters reports. The draft tax code suggests a payment from Internet providers of 150 forints (60 US cents) per gigabyte of data traffic. To put that in context, Internet traffic in Hungary exceeded 1 billion gigabytes in 2013.
Third-quarter sales at Sweden's Transmode Systems AB were down 29% year-on-year to 193 million Swedish kronor ($26.6 million). Restructuring costs severely dented net profits, which were down massively, from SEK40.1 million ($5.5 million) in the year-ago period to just SEK2.4 million ($330,000) this time round. CEO Karl Thedéen also pinned some of the blame for the results on Transmode's largest EMEA customers reducing their investments in their metro networks.
Is this what they mean by an open marriage? Irish BSS vendor Openet Telecom Ltd. has extended its partnership with OpenCloud Ltd. , the Cambridge, UK-based company best known for its Rhino range of service layer products. Under the new agreement, Openet is able to resell OpenCloud's products. (See Openet, OpenCloud Deepen Their Ties.)
French set-top box and home gateway specialist Technicolor (Euronext Paris: TCH; NYSE: TCH) recorded third-quarter revenues down 4.9% year-on-year to €839 million ($1.06 billion), with lower-than-expected activity in its DVD Services business unit being cited as one reason for the decline. (See Technicolor Reports Q3 Revenues.)
Telia Carrier has strengthened its connectivity to its customers along the West African coast with an IP Transit agreement that enables it to use Angola Cables' subsea assets. (See TeliaSonera IC Hooks Into Angola.)
Telecom Italia (TIM) has won the tender to build a fiber network in the region of Calabria. Around 800,000 households will gain access to downlink speeds of between 30 Mbit/s and 100 Mbit/s. The project represents an investment of €100 million ($127 million), €63.5 million ($80.7 million) of which comes from public funds, and €36.6 million ($46.5 million) from the carrier.
The Facebook page of Nokia France has let slip that the Nokia bit of the "Nokia Lumia" smartphone branding is to be replaced by "Microsoft." The page announces jauntily: "We are on the point of becoming 'Microsoft Lumia'!" (See Euronews: Nokia's Handsets Go Out With a Whimper.)
Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) is looking to beef up its marketing and brand-building efforts with a new business unit that will be headed up by Helena Norrman, already a member of the vendor's executive leadership team.
The Nokia Lumia: Soon to be the Microsoft Lumia.
— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading