Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 01/10/2013 -- BMI View: While the Portuguese market has the second-highest penetration rate in the region, it lags behind other markets in terms of postpaid percentage, ARPU value and mobile broadband penetration. The market struggles to generate revenue on the same level as many of the European markets, given the lower GDP per capita than many other countries in the region.
- The mobile market lost 149,000 subscribers in Q212, according to data published by the operators. In the year to June 2012, net additions were positive - 112,000. The market grew by 0.1% y-o-y.
- Data from ANACOM show that, at the end of Q212, there were 4.5mn fixed-line accesses in Portugal, a 0.9% y-o-y increase from Q211. Analogue lines fell by 5.8% from Q211 to 2.24mn at the end of Q212. The number of public payphones also fell, at a rate of 18.7% between Q211 and Q212.
- ANACOM data show that fixed broadband customers total 2.307mn, up 6.3% y-o-y. Dedicated mobile broadband subscribers decreased by 11.5% y-o-y, to1.045mn.
- In September 2012, it was revealed that ZON Multimedia and Optimus will likely merge, Optimus parent company Sonaecom deputy CEO, Miguel Almeida, said. A change in the shareholder structure has made the deal more attractive.
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The Portuguese market enjoys a high level of penetration, over 160% at the end of Q212. However, it also suffers from the lowest ARPUs in the region. With a high proportion of subscribers on prepaid contracts, the market has struggled to develop in the same manner as many of its Western European peers. This keeps Industry Rewards score low - Portugal has the joint lowest score in this category, alongside Denmark.
Key Trends & Developments
- Optimus selected Huawei to provide UMTS/LTE multi-frequency antennas for its 4G network. Optimus will deploy Huawei's multi-band (1,800MHz/2,100MHz/2,600MHz) antennas.
- Sonaecom asked the European Investment Bank (EIB) to provide funds for the development of its 4G mobile network. The operator has asked for EUR60mn (US$74.3mn) to fund an investment programme estimated to be worth EUR222mn (US$274.93mn). The investment will be directed towards the development of its 4G mobile network and upgrading of its 3G network.
- In July 2012, Portugal Telecom's financial restructuring plans were commended by Moody's Investors Services. Moody's said Portugal Telecom has successfully alleviated its liquidity risk, as well as making a strong impact in terms of deleveraging.
- ANACOM approved a draft decision on the list of municipalities without mobile broadband coverage, as part of the mobile broadband spectrum allocation. The main mobile operators are obliged to serve 480 named municipalities as part of their licence conditions.
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