Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Handset suicide

Franco Bernabe had a point when he pointed out the folly of subsidising handsets recently, Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao, said on Tuesday at the Q&A session following his company's full-year results presentation.

But as for subsidising handsets being tantamount to committing suicide for a mobile operator, as Bernabe apparently suggested... Colao is not so sure.

"In Italy we have a bit of a theatrical approach to life. I will try to make sure he doesn't commit suicide. I will give him a word of comfort," Colao said of his fellow countryman.

Vodafone will look at the handset question, "device by device, country by country," Colao said.

"I think [Bernabe] has a point, but I don't think he should commit suicide," he added.

Indeed, Vodafone Italy performed well in the year to 31 March, unlike a number of Colao's other European operations, which together dragged down Vodafone's group revenues and profits.

Most notably, the mobile operator took a £5.9 billion impairment charge for the last year, £3.4 billion of which was related to its ailing Spanish operations. For more on that story, see Total Telecom - Voda writes down £5.9bn as European ops suffer.

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