Mega French operator SFR prepares to slash another €500m in costs
Heads will roll with Catbert in charge...
French operator SFR plans to cut costs by at least €500m (£398.5m) next year, according to union sources, and that's in addition to the €450m in cuts already in process.
SFR isn't the only French operator who'll be shedding staff next year, Reuters reports that Bouygues will be laying off 556 people from its telecoms unit as the price war triggered by the launch of Free Mobile starts to bite. SFR has apparently lost 3 per cent of its customers to Free, while Bouygues is predicting a profit drop of more than 10 per cent thanks to the newly competitive conditions.
SFR is owned by Vivendi, whose CEO Jean-Bernard Lévy was in direct charge of SFR until he was ousted earlier this week. He appointed ex-Vodafone chap Michel Combes to run SFR, but the Wall Street Journal reckons he's no longer in the picture and and SFR is now being run by Vivendi's Director of Human Resources
Catbert Stéphane Roussel.
Put HR in charge and the results are predictable. The announcement won't be until November but the company has confirmed there will be big cuts in 2013 and various news sources are quoting staff who've been told to expect €500m in cuts next year, which means a lot less staff.
Vodafone will be chuffed though: the UK-based operator sold its 44 per cent stake in SFR last year, giving Vivendi full control of SFR, along with responsibility for the current situation. ®
The article is about mobile call costs. Which have been pretty high in France up until now.
(I've had an SFR mobile for 16 years. They've had 1000s off me over the years.)
French Broadband is basically a fixed cost. (~30Euros) And all the operators lump in "extras" they you may not like.
Prixtel, which is a low-cost version of SFR/Neuf (with a rebadged Neufbox) are one of the only ones to offer a broadband-only tariff (19 Euros) without all the "free" land-line calls and bundled TV.
I've had SFR (takeover of Neuf) for about 6/7 years, and since early on had free national and international landline calls, what's this 'overdue' thing?
I now have (for €29 a month) 2Mb BB, phone with no extra charge national/international, and tv, including HD. from SFR. (I paid €40 for the box). I've also got a mobile for free with 10 mins a month credit, although this is no longer on offer. I could have no charge to French mobiles for €3 a month.
No monthly rental, I have what the French call "ADSL nu" (nude ADSL), where they take over the FT line and link me to the SFR net at a regional point.
Not bad, and now that we have even more competition, the latest SFR offer is fibre for €39/month.
The customer service is so-so, not much personal service, and it costs €0.35 a min.
Not sure where the savings will be.
They've had it too good for too long...
All-you-can-eat national/international voice calls were well overdue.
Thanks to Free/Prixtel et al they are now standard packages.
They'll have to do some more belt tightening when forced to do the same for data and roaming.