Euronews: DT Ups Its Hellenic Holding

Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT), OTE S.A. and Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) kick us off in today's EMEA regional telecom roundup.

  • The Greek government has exercised its option to sell another 10 percent stake in domestic carrier OTE to Deutsche Telekom, increasing the German giant's share in the company to 40 percent. Bloomberg speculates that the deal may lead to Deutsche Telekom seeking to make changes to Greek labor laws to help further reduce costs at the ailing operator. (See Euronews: Dec. 27 and Profit Crunch for Euro Giants.)

  • Per Borgklint, who has previously worked at various operators including Versatel AG and Tele2 AB (Nasdaq: TLTO), is crossing the divide to become senior VP and head of Business Unit Multimedia at vendor Ericsson. That makes him the Swedish vendor's Head of Service Provider Information Technology (SPIT). (See Ericsson Appoints Multimedia Chief and The SPIT Manifesto.)

  • Telefónica UK Ltd. , which trades under the O2 mobile brand, has found a new head of strategy within the walls of its own HQ. Nick Lynch, who has been with the Telefónica strategy team since 2008, is the man being promoted. (See O2 Means Open.)

  • Optical Express, a U.K. chain of opticians, has been singing the praises of its Vodafone UK -supplied MPLS data network, which it claims has helped save it 40 percent on its fixed and mobile communications costs. The accounts department can't believe their eyes when the bills arrive. (See Optical Express Connects With VOD's MPLS.)

  • Just to underline how much potential there still is in the African mobile market, Reuters reports that the number of mobile subscribers in Kenya rose 28 percent year-on-year in 2010 to 25 million, helped by a widespread reduction in tariffs. Safaricom Ltd. , part-owned by Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD), is the country's largest operator. (See Scrambling for Africa, M&A-Style.)

  • And to finish, a story to make you feel wholly inadequate: Laurence Rook, a 13-year-old boy from Surrey in southern U.K. has made himself a cool £250,000 (US$410,000) by inventing an intercom doorbell (the Smart Bell) that rings the homeowner's mobile when it is pressed, reports Metro. This sounds mad until you think about it for a second -- would-be opportunistic burglars think you are in and are therefore deterred, and delivery companies could be advised where to safely leave that parcel rather than taking it back to a far-flung depot. So now Rook is rich and would-be crooks should be that little bit poorer, which is how it should be.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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