Scrapping of EU roaming rates hits Onecom’s ‘17 profitability

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Leading Vodafone Partner blames EU ruling on roaming for diminished profitability in 2017

The European Union’s scrapping of roaming charges has lowered by around £2.6 million Onecom’s anticipated 2017 profits.

The Hampshire dealer’s recently reported 2017 turnover of £71 million delivered a profit of £15.6 million, down from £18.2 million the year before.

Roaming charges were abolished in June last year, enabling EU citizens to call, text and browse the internet at the same price as they pay at home.

Onecom group CEO Darren Ridge said: “We did not anticipate such a big reduction in roaming revenue, which was the main reason why we did not hit our £100 million turnover target. But we’re immensely proud of the numbers we produce, showing great profitability and good growth overall.”

In 2016, Ridge targeted £100 million in turnover by the end of 2017, 12 months earlier than originally planned.

The target was driven by a mixture of organic growth, the company’s acquisition of Evolve Telecom and the promise of further potential purchases in the mobile, fixed-line and cloud areas.

Last month, the firm penned a five-year contract to be the official telecoms partner of Portsmouth Football Club and appointed former O2 sales director Ben Dowd as CEO. Onecom became an authorised Apple reseller in September.

In July, the company bagged Vodafone’s Total Communications Partner award for 2018. It is Vodafone’s largest dealer, with around 325,000 mobile connections.

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