UK media and telecoms correspondent
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Feb 7, 2013

Vodafone sales hit as weakness spreads across Europe

LONDON, Feb 7 (Reuters) – Trading at Vodafone
worsened in the third quarter as customers in previously robust
northern Europe joined those in the south by cutting back from
using their phones, adding impetus to the British group’s
efforts to cut costs.

A worse than expected 2.6 percent drop in organic service
revenue in the three months to Dec. 31 marked an acceleration
from the 1.4 percent fall recorded in the second quarter and
showed the intense pressure on the British group.

Feb 6, 2013

Malone strikes $15.75 billion Virgin Media deal to take on Murdoch

LONDON (Reuters) – John Malone’s Liberty Global struck a deal on Tuesday to buy British cable group Virgin Media for about $15.75 billion in stock and cash, a move that would put the U.S. billionaire up against old rival Rupert Murdoch.

The companies announced the deal in a statement late on Tuesday, after Virgin Media, the second-biggest pay-TV provider in Britain behind Murdoch’s satellite group BSkyB, confirmed Liberty’s approach earlier in the day.

Feb 5, 2013

Malone eyes Virgin Media in challenge to Murdoch

LONDON, Feb 5 (Reuters) – John Malone’s Liberty Global
has opened talks with Britain’s Virgin Media
over a takeover that would increase the U.S. cable
group’s dominance in Europe and step up a challenge to media
mogul Rupert Murdoch.

Virgin Media, the No. 2 pay-TV group in Britain behind
Murdoch’s satellite group BSkyB, has a valuation
including debt of around $20 billion.

Feb 5, 2013

Virgin Media confirms Liberty bid approach

LONDON (Reuters) – John Malone’s Liberty Global has opened talks with Britain’s Virgin Media over a takeover that would increase the U.S. cable group’s dominance in Europe and step up a challenge to media mogul Rupert Murdoch.

Virgin Media, the No. 2 pay-TV group in Britain behind Murdoch’s satellite group BSkyB, has a valuation including debt of around $20 billion.

Feb 1, 2013

Broadband and cost control help BT beat forecasts

LONDON, Feb 1 (Reuters) – Strong demand for broadband and
tight cost control helped Britain’s BT offset the
combined pressures of regulation and recession to post a
better-than-expected 7 percent rise in third-quarter pre-tax
profit.

In a continuation of the strategy that has sent shares in
the group to a near five-year high, BT said it had recorded
profits in the three months to Dec. 31 comfortably ahead of
forecasts, off revenues that were down by 6 percent.

Jan 31, 2013

BSkyB to offer sports channels online for daily fee

LONDON, Jan 31 (Reuters) – BSkyB will offer its
popular sports channels online for a daily fee, seeking new
customers to offset slowing growth at its core pay-TV service
amid sluggish consumer spending.

Sky, Britain’s dominant pay-TV group which provides
fixed-line telephony, TV and broadband to 10.7 million
households, has adapted its strategy during the economic
downturn after years of chasing new subscribers to its core TV
offering.

Jan 30, 2013

Europe’s telcos on the back foot through 2013

PARIS/LONDON, Jan 30 (Reuters) – European telecoms
valuations are languishing near decade lows, and investors are
unlikely to be tempted back over the next few weeks, when
industry results will show that revenues remain on the slide.

Telco stocks were the region’s second-worst performing
sector last year, falling more than 10 percent, and few expect
the problems of intense price competition, tight regulation,
heavy investment needs and high leverage to abate this year.

Jan 29, 2013

Bumi urges rejection of Rothschild plan

LONDON, Jan 29 (Reuters) – Bumi Plc, the
London-based Indonesian coal mining group riven by shareholder
disputes, urged investors on Tuesday to reject British financier
Nat Rothschild’s proposals to overhaul the board and back its
own plan for peace instead.

Rothschild, who is locked in a bitter corporate governance
battle with Bumi Plc’s co-founders, Indonesia’s influential
Bakrie family, wants to remove 12 of the 14 current directors
and bring in a new board including himself.

Jan 24, 2013

Cameron takes aim at corporate tax avoiders

By Kate Holton

(Reuters) – Prime Minister David Cameron on Thursday attacked multinational corporations that avoid paying their fair share of tax, promising action against such aggressive strategies after a public backlash in Britain.

The issue of tax avoidance by big business has turned toxic in recent years as millions of Britons struggle with low pay rises and austerity measures introduced to reduce the budget deficit.

Jan 24, 2013

British PM takes aim at corporate tax avoiders

Jan 24 (Reuters) – Prime Minister David Cameron on Thursday
attacked multinational corporations that avoid paying their fair
share of tax, promising action against such aggressive
strategies after a public backlash in Britain.

The issue of tax avoidance by big business has turned toxic
in recent years as millions of Britons struggle with low pay
rises and austerity measures introduced to reduce the budget
deficit.

    • About Kate

      "I am based in London and cover the UK media and telecoms sectors including BSkyB, Vodafone and WPP. I have previously covered UK general news and sports including major events such as the Olympics and football World Cups."
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