24/01/2006

Vodafone post strong seasonal figures

Mobile phone company Vodafone have posted strong figures in the crucial period in the run-up to Christmas.

Vodafone added 7.1 million new customers to bring the total subscriber base to 179.3 million, which is 30% more customers added than in the same quarter last year.

Vodafone Chief Executive Arun Sarin commented: "Vodafone has delivered a good operational performance in a challenging environment.

"Sales of 3G devices accelerated in the Christmas quarter and we continue to see encouraging take-up of data services.

"Our major markets have seen increasing competitor activity, whilst our emerging market businesses have reported strong growth. We expect to deliver full year results in line with our existing guidance and our preliminary outlook for next year remains unchanged."

Vodafone saw strong uptake of 3G with 3.1 million devices added to the new network in Q4, 2005.

This takes Vodafone's 3G customer network to around 8 million, with the company's associates, subsidiary's and joint ventures contributing a further 1.1 million 3G users.

Vodafone has experienced increasing competition across Europe during the quarter, particularly in some of its established markets.

The mobile operator Verizon Wireless continues to perform well in the United States, and Vodafone said performance in Japan, which is the toughest market, the results reflected the ongoing execution of the recovery plan.

Vodafone said that strong customer growth was recorded across many of the group’s markets during the Christmas quarter, driven by both seasonal prepaid growth and continued focus on 3G.

(SP/KMcA)

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