Eircom recorded a 5% increase in revenue over the three months to the end of June compared to the same period in 2014. The company's full year revenue of €1.26 billion was marginally lower than the €1.28 billion for 2013. But the quarter to the end of June, the fourth in Eircom's financial year, was first in which the company has delivered year-on-year growth since 2008.
Richard Moat, Eircom's chief executive, says today's results are a milestone in the turnaround of the business with the first quarterly revenue growth in seven years. Earnings are up 3% in the year and 12% in the most recent quarter and the Eircom CEO says all of this is underpinned by the €1 billion investment by the company over the last three years in its high speed fibre broadband network which has now passed over 1.3 million homes and business premises and a nationwide 4G network. He says these developments have enabled the company to sell a new range of products and services, adding that 25% of Eircom's customers now have television and mobile bundles.
Richard Moat says that Eircom is winning its new television customers from both consumers switching from Saorview and coming from other operators. About 25% of Eircom's new fibre subscribers also take up the company's TV package, he noted. Eircom is still the only operator in the country which offers quad-play services - broadband, TV, home phone and mobile phone.
On the company's plans for a rebrand, Mr Moat says the the company wants to make its brand more contemporary. While it wants to stay in touch with its past, the company wants the brand to become more relevant to the development of the country's digital economy, he explains. "We want to change the way we present ourselves to our customers and so we are going to change all the ways we sell to customers under the Eircom brand, but not the Meteor brand, " he stated.
Mr Moat says the telecoms industry has seen quite a lot of consolidation in the last few months, and while consolidation may continue in the future he does not see Eircom being part of any moves. "We are focused entirely on the performance of our business," he said. He also stated that the company has no plans to list on the stock market in the immediate future.
MORNING BRIEFS - The Irish manufacturing sector marked its 27th consecutive month of growth in August. The latest purchasing managers index from Investec shows employment, new orders and overall activity all rose during the month however the pace of growth was the slowest recorded by the index since February 2014.
*** Activity in China's manufacturing sector contracted at its fastest pace in three years in August according to two separate reports published this morning. The official manufacturing data and a second, privately produced survey, reinforced fears that growth in the world's second largest economy is slowing and that the slowdown may be more significant than previously thought.
*** Lyons Tea is the nation's favourite for a cuppa. It is one place ahead of Barry's in the annual Checkout list of Ireland's top 100 brands. The list is based on sales performance over the past 12 months and is compiled for Checkout by market research specialist Nielsen. The number one position was retained last year by Coca Cola. Avonmore Milk and Brennan's bread are the second and third favourite brands, two out of just six Irish-owned brands in the top 20.