The Telecompaper Stock Index European Telecoms narrowed its year-to-date underperformance relative to the EuroStoxx 50 index in week 10. The satellite segment suffered a blow, but more importantly the heavyweights Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone ended the week up. Micro cap Go Internet (Italy) was the week's winner, gaining 37 percent, according Telecompaper. All in all, the TPSI European Telecoms was up 1.4 percent, versus a loss of 0.9 percent for the EuroStoxx 50.
Zayo Group (+9.7%) had to indefinitely postpone its capital markets day, referring to Starboard's involvement and the company studying options for M&A. TalkTalk (-1.6%), with its own capital markets day, appeared less convincing to the market. MasMovil (+1.8%) acquired a range of retail stores, while Altice Europe (-11%) denied plans to sell its Israeli cable company Hot. State lender CDP announced plans to increase its TIM (+4.6%) shareholding to 10 percent. The FCC stopped the clock on its review of the proposed merger of Deutsche Telekom's T-Mobile US and Sprint.
Members of the C-Band Alliance, Intelsat (-22%), SES (-15%) and Eutelsat (-2.4%), were hurt by doubts about their options for selling 5G spectrum to the US mobile industry. The FCC denying any options for a nationalised 5G network didn't help either. Austria meanwhile awarded 5G spectrum in the 3.5 GHz band to its three MNOs, Telekom Austria's (+0.9%) A1, Deutsche Telekom's (+2.3%) T-Mobile and CK Hutchison's (-4.3%) Drei, plus a further four regional start-ups.
Several companies were active on the debt markets. Iliad (-8.2%) attracted an EIB loan for expanding its FTTH network. Euskaltel (+1.4%) did a refinancing for similar purposes. Forthnet (-10%) was confronted with banks converting debt to shares. Vodafone (+1.9%) raised EUR 4 billion from a mandatory convertible, with conversion in 2021 and 2022.
Polish operator Play (+3.3%) announced that it will be part of the country's WIG20 index from 15 March. The company also reported its Q4 results. Other Q4 reports came in from data centre operator InterXion (-5.1%) and Swiss retailer Mobilezone (-5.0%).
Tele Columbus (-10%) announced a 5 percent price increase. In Italy, new mobile plans were announced by CK Hutchison's Wind and two by Vodafone Italia.
Year to date, the TPSI European Telecoms is up 2.5 percent, still far behind the EuroStoxx 50 (+9.4%). M&A, or rumours of such transactions, are driving several stocks up, including Go Internet (+49%), Inwit (+30%), Zayo (+20%), Forthnet (+19%), TIM (+15%), Euskaltel (+15%) and KPN (+8.2%). In some instances, earlier takeover rumours have lost their spells, specifically in the cases of Tele Columbus (-36%) and Kcom (-5.3%).