Wind Hellas and Tellas results; group merger complete

8 Sep 2008

Greek cellco Wind Hellas has announced a 10% year-on-year increase in its consolidated mobile customer base to 4.836 million in the second quarter, alongside a decrease in post-paid annual churn to 21.6%, from 25.5% in 2Q07. Its number of active 3G users reached 350,000 at mid-2008. Its fixed line division Tellas reported an overall 11.8% y-o-y decrease in its subscriber base to 782,000 at the end of June 2008, although it noted that it had gained momentum in local loop unbundling (LLU) site rollout (113 per month by mid-2008 versus 49 a year earlier) while double-play broadband/telephony net user additions had started to pick up (19,000 in Q208 compared to 10,000 in Q207). Wind Hellas’s group total revenues reached EUR1.298 billion (USD1.853 billion) in the three months to the end of June, up 3% y-o-y, resulting in group adjusted quarterly EBITDA of EUR449 million with EBITDA margin continuing an upward trend (up 2.1 percentage points to 34.6%).

Wind Hellas also announced that its merger with Tellas is now complete, which according to its statement, ‘completes the strategic process of creating a fully integrated telecommunications operator in the Greek market and setting the ground for being the challenger to the incumbent [OTE]’, whilst also ‘optimising further synergies between the companies.’ The merger was preceded by a EUR20 million increase in the share capital of Tellas evenly contributed by existing shareholders. The share capital increase will also enable the company, owned by Egyptian-backed Weather Investments, to receive governmental subsidies of approximately EUR25 million.