BT reports strong quarter, will keep EE brand alive

UK telco BT has celebrated its acquisition of MNO EE with a strong set of quarterly numbers and the decision to keep the EE brand alive as a distinct business group within a restructured company.

Overall BT revenue was up 5%, which is apparently a good effort. This was driven by an even more exceptional performance from the consumer division, which has been grabbing broadband share from its rivals.

“This is a strong set of results with good numbers across the board,” said BT Chief Exec Gavin Patterson. Revenue was up 4.7% this quarter, our best result for more than seven years. BT Consumer had a standout quarter, increasing its overall line base for the first time in well over a decade and capturing 71% of new broadband customers.

“These are exciting times at BT. We have completed our acquisition of EE, the UK’s best mobile network provider, and are confident that we’ll deliver the anticipated cost and revenue synergies.  EE will become a separate consumer-focused line of business within the group. We’re also creating a new organisation to better serve our business and public sector customers in the UK, combining BT Business with EE’s business division and parts of BT Global Services’ UK operations. Fibre is underpinning the growth at Openreach with almost half a million premises taking up the service this quarter via dozens of service providers.

The EE news coincides with a general restructure at BT. Consumer is the direct ISP business, which includes Plusnet. EE will continue with its broadband and TV offerings for now, but they will surely begin to merge with the wider BT offerings before long. Business and Public sector is a new division that combines the BT and EE business-focused operations. Global Services provides comms services to multinationals, Wholesale and Ventures will include EE’s MVNO business and Openreach will continue as long as Ofcom lets it. There will also be a new IT and Mobile business within Technology, Service and Operations that will be led by EE CIO Fotis Karonis.

“We will operate a multi brand strategy with UK customers being able to choose a mix of BT, EE or Plusnet services, depending on which suit them best,” said Patterson. “The acquisition provides us with a chance to refresh our structure and we have done that by creating a major new division that will focus on businesses and the public sector in the UK and Ireland.”

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