Vodafone expects growth

Vodafone_Building_Near_Victoria_ParkVodafone expects its earnings growth to accelerate this year after a programme to improve its networks boosted European demand and helped the group to return to underlying growth this year for the first time since 2008.

The world’s second-largest mobile phone operator reported full-year revenue of $59 billion, up 2.3 percent on an underlying basis and broadly meeting market forecasts, reflecting a better performance in South Africa, Egypt and Turkey.

It posted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization of $16.84 billion, slightly below forecasts but up 2.7 percent. Vodafone expected this rate to accelerate to 3-6 percent this year.

Growth in Europe, the first since the end of 2010, came as Vodafone reached the end of its Project Spring multi-billion pound investment program to improve its networks.

Chief Executive Vittorio Colao said the programme had transformed the quality of the group’s technology and customer experience.

“I am confident we will sustain our positive momentum in the coming year, allowing us to maintain attractive returns for our shareholders,” he said.