Vodafone’s adjusted revenue forecasts yesterday saw its shares tumble 14 per cent to a 20-month low, wiping £10 billion off the company’s market value.
Vodafone’s quarterly results and forecast also saw stock across the telecoms market fall. Its Spanish and UK operation were hardest hit by the economic slowdown, with Vodafone Spain’s revenue falling 2.5 per cent in Q1 and Vodafone UK’s voice revenues down 4.4 per cent in the quarter and overall revenue growth flat at 2.1 per cent. The group also lost 27,000 UK customers from its 18.5 million base.
Shares in O2 parent company Telefonica tumbled 5.5 per cent on fears it too could be heading for trouble in its home market.
Shares in Deutsche Telekom, home to T-Mobile, fell 6.4 per cent and Orange’s parent France Telecom shed 4.4 per cent of its value.
Telecoms equipment supplier Ericsson took an even bigger kick.
Its shares dropped 11 per cent in value despite the Swedish giant reporting better-than-expected second-quarter earnings, as analysts fretted that Vodafone and other big customers may cut back on spending plans to cope with the downturn.
Vodafone’s resultswiped 44 points off the FTSE 100, as it brought its revenue forecast for the year in line with the lower end of its original £39.8-£40.7 billion expectations.
Outgoing Vodafone chief Arun Sarin (pictured) admitted: "There’s a big macroeconomic picture that’s playing through, and frankly, as a company, we’re not immune to it."