Vodafone hints at job cuts as profits climb

Vodafone, the world’s biggest carrier in terms of revenues got a little bigger on Tuesday, recording a 9.3 per cent year on year increase in reported revenues for the six months to the end of September 2009. Group turnover came in at £21.8bn in 2009, compared to just under £20bn in 2008, while reported profit for the period hit £4.8bn.

The firm hinted at further cuts, accelerating its £1bn cost reduction programme to target a further £1bn in operating cost savings by 2012 by focusing on network, sourcing and infrastructure scale across a wider geographic area, and through further overhead reduction, chief executive Vittorio Colao said.

Colao added that Vodafone intends to deliver on all savings from its existing cost cutting programme in the current financial year, a year ahead of plan.

In Africa and Central Europe Vodafone said that service revenue increased by 34.6 per cent reflecting the full consolidation of Vodacom following completion of the stake purchase in May 2009. On an organic basis service revenue declined by 3.2 per cent with continued growth in Vodacom and a 6.8 per cent increase in the average customer base for the region offset by declines in Turkey and Romania.

The £1 billion cost reduction programme is expected to be delivered a year ahead of plan and we have extended this to a further £1 billion of cost savings by 2012. At the same time, we have maintained our capital investment at £2.6 billion in the first half, delivering further improvements in network quality and performance for our customers. We have continued to develop innovative services for businesses and consumers, such as Vodafone One Net and Vodafone 360, and to expand our fixed line services. We will continue our focus on the delivery of our growth strategy, particularly in data services,” Colao said.

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