Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Ericsson's silicon photonics breakthrough; Cameroon-Nigeria subsea link completed; eircom's profits up 3%.
France's Iliad (Euronext: ILD) continues to put the wind up its rivals, with its latest set of results showing it added 820,000 net mobile subscriber additions in the first six months of 2015, making it, the operator claims, the country's leading recruiter of mobile subscribers -- under the Free brand -- for the 14th consecutive quarter. On the landline side, Iliad recorded 123,000 net subscriber additions for its fixed broadband and "ultra-broadband" offerings. EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) was up 16% year-on-year to €725 million (US$815.4 million), on revenues up 7% to €2.2 billion ($2.4 billion). (See Bouygues Chief Bitter Over Iliad's Inclusion and Eurobites: Iliad's Mobile Subs Soar.)
Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC)'s news machine has been busy during the past couple of days. On Monday the company announced that a European Commission-funded research project called IRIS, led by the vendor's Italian unit, has developed a next-generation silicon photonics chip that can help improve performance and efficiency in high-density transmission and switching systems. Such capabilities will be needed to cope with the future network capacity demands of 5G and ubiquitous cloud computing architectures, says the vendor, which cites its HDS 8000 data center system as an example of an existing product that makes use of silicon photonics. Also on Monday, Ericsson announced it has struck OSS interoperability agreements with Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) and Tektronix Communications (now part of NetScout Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: NTCT)). Then today Ericsson announced two new software upgrades -- 16A for greater mobile network efficiencies and 16B to support more efficient IoT deployments. For more details see the following press releases:
Huawei Marine Networks Co. Ltd. has completed the marine installation of the Nigeria-Cameroon Submarine Cable System (NCSCS), providing a 1,100km direct link between Kribi in Cameroon and Lagos in Nigeria that offers 12.8 Tbit/s capacity to broadband users in both countries.
Cost-cutting at Ireland's eir helped drive full-year EBITDA up 3% to €481 million ($540.9 million), on revenues that remained flat at €1.26 billion ($1.41 billion). CEO Richard Moat described the period covered by the results statement as a "transformative year," and revealed that a new brand for the operator was in the works. Separately, Moat told Reuters that his company has no plans for an IPO at present.
The Spanish government will launch an auction for spectrum in the 2.6GHz band in "the coming weeks," according to a Reuters report.
Class-action headaches loom for Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) in European courts, as US law firm Hausfeld and antitrust consulting company Avisa Partners set up a platform which it will use to evaluate potential suits against the search giant. The moves comes as the European Commission adopts an increasingly tough stance on antitrust infringements. Bloomberg reports that individual claims could reach around €100 million ($112.8 million).
— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading