Deutsche Telekom CEO Timotheus Höttges said its UK joint venture with Orange should focus on gaining more fixed-line subscribers before any decisions on its future ownership structure are made.
Höttges, who was speaking to journalists during an event at the German operator's Bonn headquarters, said EE is "doing brilliantly", but should first "take care of fixed-mobile convergence", Bloomberg reported. It has previously been reported that EE's two parent companies have resumed talks on a possible flotation or sale of the UK company in 2015.
The comments by Deutsche Telekom's CEO came just ahead of an announcement by EE that its new home TV service is now available in EE stores across the UK. EE TV--a set-top box (STB) service that allows TV to be viewed on home televisions, tablets and smartphones--is offered free with EE's home broadband and landline packages, and starts from £9.95 (€12.60) per month for existing EE mobile customers.
By adding home TV to its service mix and moving closer to becoming a "quad-play" provider (mobile services plus fixed voice/TV/broadband in one bundle), EE is positioning itself to compete with existing pay-TV providers such as BT, Virgin Media and Sky as well as with rival mobile network operators.
The company is already ahead on the LTE market in the UK: in its recent third-quarter report, EE said it saw the number of its LTE subscribers increase by 1.4 million to 5.6 million; since then the company has reached 6 million LTE users and launched LTE Advanced services in London.
The company also reported flat operating revenue of £1.5 billion for the third quarter, however. Including the impact of regulatory cuts, operating revenue was 1.2 per cent lower.
- see this Bloomberg article
- see this EE release
EE launches LTE Advanced services in London, reaches 6M LTE users
Orange's Pellissier sees arrival of more converged services in UK
EE increases LTE users to 5.6M, reports flat revenue growth
Reports: Deutsche Telekom and Orange revive talks on EE sale or IPO
E launches home TV service to take on BT, Sky and Virgin