Vodafone Australia returns to growth

Vodafone has recorded its first growth in revenue since its infamous mobile network failures in 2010.
Written by Josh Taylor, Contributor

Vodafone Australia has seen a return to revenue growth in the first three months of 2015, marking the company's first revenue growth in several years.

Vodafone Group, the company's 50 percent owner today reported that its Australian mobile telecommunications company had "continued its good recovery, returning to local currency service revenue growth in Q4 as a result of improving trends in both customer numbers and ARPU [average revenue per user], supported by significant network enhancements".

The company reported 1 percent growth in revenue in Australia for the first three months of 2015, compared to a decline of 1.3 percent in revenue in the last three months of 2014.

The company added 14,000 net new customers on the back of its Red plans, and ARPU was up 0.9 percent.

Full-year earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) had an 18.5 percent margin.

The company stated it was focused on driving up data usage through content agreements, such as the one signed with Australian streaming video company Stan, and would expand into 30 new retail stores in the first half of 2015.

"As highlighted in Vodafone Group's results, Vodafone Australia's turnaround strategy is now complete and we are in growth mode," a spokesperson for the company said.

"Supported by our strong network, innovative products and excellent customer service, we're seeing solid trends continue in 2015."

Vodafone's customer growth is still lower than its competitors Optus and Telstra. Optus reported adding 42,000 net new customers in the first three months of this year. Telstra doesn't report quarterly results, but in the last half of last year reported adding 366,000 new customers to its mobile network.

Vodafone Group overall reported a 0.9 percent growth, with strong growth in Ghana, India, Turkey, Romania, and Egypt offset by declines in Greece, Germany, Portugal, Italy, Ireland, and Spain.

Group revenue was up 10.1 percent to £42.2 billion, amid the company's £19 billion investment program, Project Spring, extending European 4G coverage to 72 percent of the population. A total of 20.2 million Vodafone customers in 18 markets now have 4G access, and data volumes up 81 percent year on year for the quarter.

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