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You know what’s not so throttled at O2? UK sales. They're up 2.6%

Firm chips away at debt after Three flog-off squashed

Mobile operator Telefonica – AKA O2 – has posted an increase in sales in Blighty of 2.6 per cent to €1.6bn (£1.4bn) for its second quarter, with operating income before depreciation and amortisation (OIBDA) up 3.9 per cent to €433m.

Group revenues rose 1.9 per cent to €12.96bn in the second quarter, while OIBDA increased 6.1 per cent to €4.16bn. That increase was mainly the result of a 23 per cent jump in profits in Brazil.

The firm now hopes to increase revenues to 1.5 per for the full-year, and aims to grow profit margin by 1 percentage point.

The firm had previously hoped to raise cash by flogging off its O2 division in the UK to Hutchison Whampoa's Three for £10.3bn, until those plans were quashed by the European regulator last year.

But it managed to cut its debt to €48.5bn, a €279m reduction from the first quarter.

Philip Carse, analyst at Megabuyte, noted that the financial growth numbers were some 7 to 9 percentage points worse than the organic growth rates due to the depreciation of sterling versus the euro following the Brexit vote.

Chief exec Jose Maria Alvarez-Pallet said: "The strength and better business trends in the first half of the year, as well as being well-positioned to continue capturing sustainable growth in the coming quarters, allow us to upgrade our guidance for 2017." ®


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