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Broadband growth buoys Wanadoo

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Almost half of Wanadoo's internet users are broadband subscribers, the company's parent France Telecom (FT) announced today. At the end of December the number of Wanadoo broadband subscribers had risen to 4.37m (up from 2.45m a year before) making up 46 per cent of Wanadoo's European customer base at the end of 2004.

In France, Wanadoo has just a soupcon under three million broadband punters at the end of 2004 with the rest spread around its country operations in the UK, Spain and the Netherlands. In the UK, Wanadoo's share of DSL connections has risen from 9 per cent to 14 per cent over the year. The ISP is understood to have around 680,000 broadband punters, putting it behind AOL UK's 750,000 and BT's 1.49m.

The total revenues from FT's Wanadoo ISP were €2.9bn (£1.99bn), an increase of 9.9 per cent on the year thanks mainly to sustained growth in the number of broadband customers.

FT's mobile business - Orange - also appears to be doing well in the UK. Against a backdrop of an increasingly competitive market, the number of Orange UK punters accelerated in Q4 with and extra 335,000 new customers - an increase of 20.5 per cent compared to 12 months earlier. Total punter numbers in the UK now stand in excess of 14.2m. Revenues at Orange UK were up 5.5 per cent at €6.1bn (£4.2bn) although operating income before depreciation and amortisation dipped to €1.99bn (£1.37bn) from €2bn (£1.38bn).

Overall, FT group increased revenues by 2.2 per cent during 2004 to €47.2bn (£32.5bn). Operating income before depreciation and amortisation was up 5.5 per cent at €18.3bn (£12.6bn). ®

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