Spark (formerly Telecom New Zealand) claims it is now the country’s leading mobile operator in terms of revenues despite the fact that it still trails main rival Vodafone NZ when it comes to subscriber numbers. Following the recent announcement of its planned merger with local pay-TV operator Sky Network Television, Vodafone NZ for the first time published figures relating to its own mobile revenues, saying it expected to bring in NZD1.065 billion (USD723 million) from wireless services in the year to 30 June 2016. Spark, meanwhile, says it expects its comparable mobile revenue in the same period to exceed NZD1.1 billion.
At the end of 2015 Vodafone had 2.36 million cellular subscribers in New Zealand, having added 28,000 net new users over the previous twelve months, while Spark claimed 2.21 million subscribers at end-2015, up from 2.11 million a year before. As reported by CommsUpdate earlier this month, Sky plans to acquire all of the shares in Vodafone NZ for a total purchase price of NZD3.437 billion through the issue of new Sky shares – giving UK-based Vodafone Group a 51% interest in the merged company – plus a cash consideration of NZD1.250 billion, to be funded through new debt.