France Telecom rings up a profit

29th October 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Oct 28 (AFP) - France Telecom reported third quarter operational earnings Thursday of EUR 4.86 billion (USD 6.2 billion), up 3.9 percent from the same period last year.

PARIS, Oct 28 (AFP) - France Telecom reported third quarter operational earnings Thursday of EUR 4.86 billion (USD 6.2 billion), up 3.9 percent from the same period last year.

The results were in line with market expectations of earnings in a range of EUR 4.8-4.97 billion.

Sales rose 3.5 percent to EUR 12.049 billion.

Analysts at Deutsche Bank said the earnings report "provides comfort" to the company's 2004 guidance, which calls for full year operating earnings of EUR 18 billion.

France Telecom shares were higher in mid-day trading here, as investors welcomed the results that broadly met analyst expectations, dealers said.

Shares were up 0.88 percent at EUR 21.72 while the overall CAC-40 was 41.56 points or 1.1 percent stronger ct at 3,719.95.

"Overall, France Telecom's results were well received by the market," one Paris-based dealer said.

France Telecom financial director Michael Combes said the performance demonstrated that the company's integration strategy was working. France Telecom recently incorporated the activities of its mobile phone unit Orange and its Internet provider Wanadoo.

Combes said the group would now focus on halting a slide in fixed line sales, which fell 1.3 percent in the third quarter to EUR 5.36 billion from the previous three months, as well as boosting its high-speed Internet clients and subscribers to its mobile phone unit in Britain.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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