Portugal Telecom dissatisfied with results of cable TV subsidiary in Macau

27 June 2006

Lisbon, Portugal, 27 June – Portugal Telecom is dissatisfied with the results of its subsidiary TV Cabo Macau, which it considers is “of inadequate size or badly managed,” and is among the worst performing of the Company’s businesses in China.

In an interview with Portuguese newspaper Diário de Notícias published Monday, Henrique Granadeiro, Portugal Telecom’s chairman, said that the operation was being analysed and that soon solutions would be announced to resolve the situation without selling the 87 percent stake in the company.

The cable operation, “is not going so well. It is either of inadequate size or if badly managed,” Granadeiro said.

The PT chairman said that the problem was operational and that the operator, “is comfortable about the good partners it has and the good relationship with the government,” of the Special Administrative Region of Macau.

In 2004, the latest figures available, TV Cabo Macau posted turnover of US$2.4 million, a quarter more than in the previous year.

Its customer base increased 16 percent to 37,000, but PT believes that results are falling below the company’s market potential.

In the interview Granadeiro said that the cable operation was the only business performing below expectations, and said he was satisfied with remaining operations.

The Portuguese operator is also present in the mobile, fixed-line communications, Internet and data markets – via CTM – satellite radio – telesat – and directory enquiries – Directel Macau.

CTM is currently the largest company, with the company having posted operating revenue of over US$246,639, 14 percent more than in the previous year.

Currently, Portugal Telecom has stakes in the fixed and mobile telecoms markets in Sao Tome, Macau, Kenya, Mozambique, Botswana and Angola, via Unitel, a company in which it has a 25 percent stake.

With Unitel, Portugal Telecom recently acquired 51 percent of the company holding the GSM 900 to 1800 MHz license from Zimbabwe’s Cellco, which is due to start operating in the second half of this year.

The company is also working on entering the Namibian market and also, with Unitel, the Democratic Republic of the Congo. (macauhub)