UK media and telecoms correspondent
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Feb 28, 2014

Pearson earnings to fall in second year of restructuring

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s Pearson (PSON.L: Quote, Profile, Research) warned its earnings would fall sharply again in 2014 as the publisher entered the second year of a restructuring sparked by the deterioration in its main U.S. education market.

Pearson, the 170-year-old world leader in education which is under new leadership after years of good growth, suffered a tough 2013 and downgraded its outlook twice.

Feb 27, 2014

Currency swings and ad competition hit WPP’s shares

BARCELONA (Reuters) – Fierce competition in the global advertising industry forced Britain’s WPP (WPP.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) to lower its profit guidance for 2014 on Thursday, wiping more than a billion pounds off its share price and overshadowing its improving trading throughout 2013.

The world’s largest advertising group said it had outperformed the rest of the industry in winning new business but the combination of clients demanding more for less, and currency fluctuations had hit its operating margins on a reported basis.

Feb 27, 2014

Discount pricing hits Britain’s WPP’s margins and shares

BARCELONA, Feb 27 (Reuters) – Fierce competition within the
advertising industry forced Britain’s WPP to lower its
margin guidance for 2014, wiping over a billion pounds off its
share price and taking the shine off an acceleration in trading
through 2013.

The world’s largest advertising group said like-for-like
revenue had grown in line with forecasts, at 3.5 percent, and
was up to 5.7 percent in January, by the main industry
measurement.

Feb 26, 2014

Investors back Vodafone’s pricey cable push despite AT&T risk

BARCELONA (Reuters) – Shareholders in Vodafone (VOD.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) say they support Chief Executive Vittorio Colao’s plan to rebuild the company with pricey European broadband assets, even though it could complicate a lucrative mooted bid from AT&T (T.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

Fresh from the sale of the company’s U.S. arm for $130 billion, Colao has said he could spend up to $40 billion on acquisitions to shore up its recession-hit European operations,

Feb 24, 2014

Cable operator Ono sees pick-up in investor interest in Spain

BARCELONA (Reuters) – With the beginnings of an economic recovery taking hold, Spanish cable telecoms operator Ono believes the time is ripe for attracting international investors in a share market listing which would help it pay down its debts, it said on Monday.

“Capital is returning to Spain. After five difficult years, things are changing quite rapidly, which is very good news for us,” said Rosalia Portela, the chief executive of the private equity-backed group, in an interview.

Feb 23, 2014

China’s Huawei seeks U.S. foothold in smartphone race: executive

BARCELONA, Spain (Reuters) – China’s Huawei Technologies believes it can take advantage of recent changes in how operators in the United States sell phones to get a foothold in the all-important market, an executive with its consumer division said on Sunday.

Huawei, best known as a maker of telecom network gear, became the world’s third-biggest smartphone manufacturer last year, through the sale of mid-priced handsets within its fast-growing domestic market and an increasing appeal to price-conscious consumers in western Europe.

Feb 23, 2014

China’s Huawei seeks U.S. foothold in smartphone race -exec

BARCELONA, Spain, Feb 23 (Reuters) – China’s Huawei
Technologies believes it can take advantage of recent
changes in how operators in the United States sell phones to get
a foothold in the all-important market, an executive with its
consumer division said on Sunday.

Huawei, best known as a maker of telecom network gear,
became the world’s third-biggest smartphone manufacturer last
year, through the sale of mid-priced handsets within its
fast-growing domestic market and an increasing appeal to
price-conscious consumers in western Europe.

Feb 21, 2014

Ex-Murdoch editor Brooks denies having affair with Coulson

LONDON (Reuters) – Rebekah Brooks, the former boss of Rupert Murdoch’s British newspapers, told a London court on Friday she did have moments of physical intimacy with fellow editor Andy Coulson but denied a prosecution charge that she had a six-year affair with him.

Holding back tears as she took the stand at her trial into phone-hacking offences, Brooks said she had been extremely close friends with Coulson, and on occasion had intimate relations with him between 1998 and 2006.

Feb 20, 2014

Ex-Murdoch editor Brooks launches hacking defense, acquitted on one charge

LONDON (Reuters) – The jury trying Rebekah Brooks over phone-hacking charges should not hold her role as a former Rupert Murdoch editor with huge political influence against her, her lawyer said, as the former British newspaper boss took the stand on Thursday.

Brooks, a friend of Prime Minister David Cameron, answered questions in court for the first time on the hacking scandal which has convulsed Britain’s elite and forced Murdoch to close the 168-year-old tabloid at the center of the scandal, the News of the World.

Feb 19, 2014

Former UK PM Blair offered to advise Murdoch over phone-hacking

LONDON (Reuters) – Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair offered to act as an unofficial adviser to Rupert Murdoch during his media empire’s phone-hacking scandal, suggesting the firm follow steps he took to address Iraq War anger, a London court heard on Wednesday.

Rebekah Brooks, the ex-boss of Murdoch’s British newspapers, wrote an email to Murdoch’s son James detailing advice Blair had given her during an hour-long phone call in July 2011 at the height of a furor over phone-hacking allegations at the media moguls’ News of the World tabloid.

    • 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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