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Broadband offsets BT's Q3 slide

Fat pipes make money

BT today reported a drop in earnings and revenue for the third-quarter 2003, but said its broadband and mobile services offset declines in its traditional voice business.

The company reported revenue of £4.58 billion for its third quarter, down 2.6 percent on the same quarter last year.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization for the quarter came in at £1.47 billion, down three percent from a year ago. Earnings per share rose seven percent, however, to 4.4p from 4.1p in the third quarter of 2002.

"New wave" revenue, a term the company used to cover newer technologies such as broadband, mobility and managed services, rose 31 percent in the quarter to £838 million, while revenue from BT's traditional business fell eight percent, the company announced in a statement.

BT's retail division saw revenue of £3.33 billion, down five percent from £3.52 billion in the third quarter of 2002. Within BT Retail, the largest increase came from broadband: revenue from broadband service grew 161 percent to £81 million from £31 million the previous year.

The wholesale division reported revenue of £2.68 billion, down six percent from £2.85 billion a year earlier, while BT Global Services cited a nine percent revenue increase to £1.41 billion.

The company won contracts worth over £2 billion in the past quarter and reduced its debt by 32 percent to £8.80 billion.


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