SFR revealed further progress in the rollout of its LTE and LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) networks as the France-based operator readies itself for the end of a 4G-network sharing and roaming agreement with Bouygues Telecom.
Altice is reportedly studying a sale of its Belgian unit as part of a streamlining process that would enable the group to focus on its bigger operations in France and the U.S.
Michel Combes was appointed CEO of Netherlands-based Altice following a management reshuffle ahead of the launch of the company's new business in the U.S.
France's mobile operators submitted amendments to existing national roaming agreements by the Jun. 15 deadline set by regulator Arcep, indicating that they intend to phase out such agreements by either end-2018 or 2020.
Orange CEO Stephane Richard and Patrick Drahi, the president and founder of SFR parent Altice, indicated this week that they do not expect to see a further consolidation of the French telecoms markets at least in the near future.
SFR launched 4G or LTE Advanced services at maximum download speeds of 337.5 Mbps following the implementation of tri-band carrier aggregation (CA) technology into the company's network.
The Virgin Mobile brand is set to disappear from the French mobile market following the integration of the virtual network operator with the low-cost Red by SFR brand.
Altice said group revenue fell by 2.7 per cent year on year to €4.26 billion ($4.85 billion) in the first quarter of 2016 after a "challenging" quarter in France was offset by growth in its international operations.
Altice founder and owner Patrick Drahi plans to turn France-based operator SFR into a fully converged telecoms and media group after being inspired by the approach taken by BT in the UK, according to reports in the French press.
Arcep figures showed that the decline in mobile services revenue that started on the French market in mid-2011 continued throughout 2015, but that the rate of decrease remained on a downward trend.