Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Three days, three misses

We're early into the Q1 reporting season in EuroTelcoland, and so far things are looking rough. Tele2 missed expectations on Monday, TeliaSonera reported numbers below the bottom of the consensus range yesterday, and Telenor has repeated the feat this morning. Our forecasts were towards the more cautious end of the range (based on Reuters consensus), but revenues and EBITDA were still NOK600m and NOK400m short, respectively. That's an undershoot of 4% and 7% respectively. On the conference call just now, CEO Baksaas remarked that the weak showing from the fixed business reflects mobile substitution and "changes in the nature of the market due to the broadband generation." I think the short form of that phrase is "VoIP/IM/Skype." Another phrase used was "intensify operational excellence" in the fixed business, though no specific figures were outlined. I assume that means supersizing some downsizing.

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