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Eurobites: Italy shines in Iliad's Q3

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Eir's flat Q3; new Italian government considers renationalization option for Telecom Italia; Telefónica examines its environmental impact.

  • France's Iliad saw third-quarter growth in revenues of 12.5% year-over-year, to €2.15 billion (US$2.24 billion), with its Italian operation proving a bright spot, boasting 15% revenue growth. Indeed, Iliad Italia was the market leader for mobile net adds, adding 261,000 net new mobile subscribers in the third quarter. In France, Iliad's Free unit delivered one of its best quarterly sales performances of the last ten years, with 78,000 net adds for the fixed business and 184,000 for mobile (including 277,000 net new 4G/5G subscribers).

    (Source: Reuters / Alamy Stock Photo)
    (Source: Reuters / Alamy Stock Photo)

  • Underlying third-quarter revenue at Ireland's Eir slipped 1% year-over-year, to €293 million ($305 million), leaving EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) flat, at €139 million ($145 million). Cost-cutting was partly offset by the earlier acquisition of Evros. Broadband-customer numbers were down 1% year-over-year, to 957,000, largely the result of wholesale losses, while Eir TV numbers also fell, by 2%. However, the outlook was brighter on the mobile side, with total customers up 7%, to 1.29 million.

  • Italy's new government is pushing for incumbent operator Telecom Italia (TIM) to be brought back under state control, according to a Reuters report. Speaking on the sidelines of a conference in Rome, Industry Minister Adolfo Urso said that the privatization of the former monopoly had been a "mistake." TIM has been attempting to reorganize itself for years, holding seemingly interminable talks with government officials and others about merging its fixed-line network with Open Fiber, a state-backed wholesale operator. (See Telecom Italia is how other telcos fear they may one day look.)

  • As the COP27 climate summit trundles towards its Friday conclusion, Telefónica has published its first "lifecycle" environmental impact and benefit analysis of its connectivity offererings in a bid to reinforce its 2040 decarbonization commitments. One interesting nugget to emerge is the discovery that the environmental impact per petabyte of Telefónica's fiber-to-the-home is 18 times lower than its copper-based equivalent. The operator plans to decommission all its copper installations by the end of 2025.

  • Ofcom, the UK communications regulator, has introduced new rules that it hopes will better protect consumers from calls made using "spoofed" telephone numbers, which appear to be from trustworthy sources, but aren't. Among other measures, Ofcom is calling on operators to improve the accuracy of Calling Line Identification (CLI) data and to run more thorough checks on businesses seeking to use particular phone numbers that they buy off the operator.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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