With an acquisition budget of $1 billion, Telekom Austria could reshape the eastern European broadband market, the company CEO reportedly told media this week.
During a press conference in Vienna, CEO Alejandro Plater said Telekom Austria wanted to enter new markets in the area. The service provider also is considering strengthening its existing footprint in regions such as Belarus, Croatia and Macedonia, Reuters reported.
"If you don't expand you will not be relevant," Plater said, according to Reuters.
The news is of particular interest since Telekom Austria is owned, in large part, by América Móvil, which focuses on Latin America. Telekom Austria Group serves nearly 21 million mobile subscribers and more than 6 million fixed-line customers in Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Belarus, Macedonia, Serbia and Slovenia, wrote Iain Morris in sister site Light Reading.
The Austrian service provider reported revenue of €4.4 billion ($5.4 billion) in 2017, up 3% on sales in 2016, and made nearly €1.4 billion ($1.7 billion) in earnings (before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization), an increase of 2% over the prior 12-month period.
With such apparent financial strength, Telekom Austria appears poised to invest in sometimes capital-hungry solutions such as fiber (FTTx) for under- or unserved regions, as well as the expansion of Gfast technologies for urban areas with many multi-dwelling units. Pouring these foundations would then enable the operator to advance further into services such as smart city, smart home and enterprise offerings.
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