BT preps renewed 5G push, pandemic hits earnings - Mobile World Live

BT preps renewed 5G push, pandemic hits earnings

13 MAY 2021

BT Group CEO Philip Jansen (pictured) claimed its EE division was ready to take 5G to the next level in its home market after increasing spectrum assets earlier this year, as he unveiled fiscal Q4 results (to end-March) heavily hit by lockdown measures.

Jansen used BT’s earnings statement to note the company’s 5G footprint had doubled in the recent fiscal year and, following the acquisition of more spectrum in the UK’s latest auction, it was ready to continue its 5G push.

BT added its EE unit was well positioned to build on its position leading in UK 5G.

The company noted EE’s next-generation service was available in 160 locations by end-March, with its “5G-ready customer base” at 3.2 million compared with 53,000 at the same point in 2020.

Post-paid monthly mobile ARPU was £2.30 lower year-on-year with prepaid down £1.10. The company attributed drops in its mobile unit to reduced earnings from roaming, lower out-of-bundle usage and a fall in prepaid activity during Covid-19 (coronavirus) lockdown measures.

BT also unveiled plans to accelerate rollout of full fibre in the country, bumping its target of FTTP sites from 20 million to 25 million by December 2026.

Revenue for its consumer division, which comprises its various domestic fixed and mobile propositions, dropped 4 per cent year-on-year in Q4 to £2.4 billion.

EBITDA was down 17 per cent to £518 million as lockdown measures “heavily impacted” several segments. It did not reveal net profit.

Across the group, annual revenue fell 7 per cent to £21.3 billion with net profit down 15 per cent to £1.4 billion.

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Chris Donkin

Chris joined the Mobile World Live team in November 2016 having previously worked at a number of UK media outlets including Trinity Mirror, The Press Association and UK telecoms publication Mobile News. After spending 10 years in journalism, he moved...

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