Vodafone, Telefónica and Orange suffer pain in Spain

Vodafone, Telefónica and Orange are blaming the harsh economic climate in Spain for their continued decline in market share.

According to the country's telecoms regulator, CMT, Vodafone lost more than 131,000 subscribers in April, Telefonica had over 41,000 customers stop using its service and Orange recorded over 23,000 leaving its network.

Telefónica's share of the mobile market fell to 41.34 per cent in April, down from 41.58 per cent in January, a trend that echoed in its fixed broadband division, which shed over 23,000 customers.

The three leading Spanish operators have been losing customers for some months, while low-cost service providers and MVNOs, including TeliaSonera's Yoigo, have been gaining subscribers; Yoigo added 40,000 subscribers in April.

In an attempt to rectify the problem, Telefónica, the euro zone's largest telecoms company, has announced a new cut-price tariff of €0.06 per minute, which some observers believe will only accelerate the decline in the company's ARPU. The Spanish company also continues to wrestle with its controversial proposal to cut 6,500 jobs, down from the 8,500 rumoured last week, as it negotiates with local unions over redundancy payments, suggested to be around €2.6 billion.

For more:
- see this Reuters article
- see this Telecom Paper article (sub. req.)
- see this separate Reuters article

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