Reuters reports that Britain’s Vodafone Group wishes to rebrand its German fixed line business Arcor but only once growth in the country’s DSL broadband market slows down, Vodafone’s German head said. ‘I believe it would be wrong to dispense with the Arcor brand at this time, that would be bad for business. As long as the DSL market keeps on growing at the current rate, there is no time pressure,’ Friedrich Joussen said. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, Vodafone was the number two cellco in the country by subscribers after Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile, with 33.9 million customers at the end of December 2007. It began offering DSL through Arcor in 2006. ‘In the current quarter DSL sales are going well, even better than in the Christmas quarter,’ Joussen said. He added that it would be ‘relatively easy’ to gain DSL market share in the coming two years. ‘The goal for Vodafone and Arcor is to have a DSL market share of 20%, currently we are at 13%,’ said the CEO.
Vodafone acquired Arcor, of which it owns 74%, when it bought German mobile operator Mannesmann in 2000. Deutsche Bahn and Deutsche Bank own minority stakes in Arcor, which Vodafone wants to buy. A major sticking point is the price. According to some reports, Deutsche Bahn is asking around EUR650 million (USD987.5 million) for its 18% stake. It is thought Vodafone would be willing to pay EUR400 million.