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Wanadoo UK down 230k punters

But broadband customers on the up-and-up

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Wanadoo UK - formerly Freeserve - has lost almost quarter of a million punters over the last year but insists its strategy to concentrate on broadband is delivering results.

At the end of September, Wanadoo UK had 2.44m users - down from 2.67m a year ago. However, while the number of narrowband punters has dropped steadily broadband growth has been impressive, with numbers growing from 68,000 a year ago to 442,000. Much of this growth is down to Wanadoo UK's aggressive pricing in the marketplace as it slashed the cost of its entry-level service to £17.99 a month in April before doubling the service speed a few months later.

At the same time the average revenue generated per user (ARPU) per month has increased from €8.1 (£5.63) to €10.7 (£7.44) and Wanadoo UK maintains that it is "on track to make EBITDA target for the end of the year".

A spokeswoman for Wanadoo UK said: "We did expect to lose some narrowband customers as a result of our focus on broadband. We are thrilled with our broadband customers and look forward to growing our base even more. Our vision is to be the UK's most popular broadband services operator."

In February this year Wanadoo UK said that it was to make a big push for broadband this year in a change of strategy away from dial-up. At the time a company source said: "This is the year for broadband for us - we're going for it."

Yesterday, rival AOL UK announced that it now has more than half a million broadband punters in the UK and a total customer base of some 2.3m customers in all. ®

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