AGL under pressure to explain Vocus takeover

Original article by Lucas Baird, Simon Evans
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 15 & 22 : 12-Jun-19

Vocus Group has agreed to allow AGL Energy to commence due diligence after offering $4.85 per share for the telco. AGL investors have responded bearishly to the $3bn bid, with its share price falling 7.2 per cent to $19.40 on 11 June. Sentiment toward AGL was also affected by an earnings downgrade on 7 June, before the stock market closed for a long weekend. Justin Braitling of Watermark Funds Management and James Nevin of RBC Capital Markets have questioned whether Vocus is an appropriate target for AGL.

CORPORATES
AGL ENERGY LIMITED – ASX AGL, VOCUS GROUP LIMITED – ASX VOC, WATERMARK FUNDS MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, RBC CAPITAL MARKETS, EQT INFRASTRUCTURE, M2 GROUP LIMITED

Vocus has no regrets as turnaround proves too risky for EQT

Original article by James Fernyhough
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 13 & 20 : 6-Jun-19

Vocus Group CEO Kevin Russell says he is not aware of any other potential takeover approaches for the telco, after EQT Infrastructure chose not to make a binding offer for the company. EQT undertook due diligence on Vocus after approaching it with a non-binding offer of $5.25 per share. The Sweden-based private equity firm’s decision to walk away from a deal prompted a sell-down of Vocus shares on 5 June, with the stock closing almost 18 per cent lower at $3.77. Russell says Vocus is making progress in its turnaround strategy.

CORPORATES
VOCUS GROUP LIMITED – ASX VOC, EQT INFRASTRUCTURE, M2 GROUP LIMITED, AGL ENERGY LIMITED – ASX AGL, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, GREENCAPE CAPITAL PTY LTD

Morrison includes telcos in social media crackdown

Original article by Paul Smith
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 9 : 21-Mar-19

The federal government will meet with representatives of ISPs and digital platforms on 26 March to discuss measures to prevent the distribution of objectionable content. Social media companies have come under scrutiny after their platforms were used to live-stream the Christchurch mosque shootings, and they were initially expected to be the focus of the government’s talks. However, representatives of Telstra, Optus and Vodafone will also attend the meeting in Brisbane. The telcos have announced that they will block access to footage of the mosque attacks.

CORPORATES
TELSTRA CORPORATION LIMITED – ASX TLS, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, VODAFONE AUSTRALIA LIMITED, FACEBOOK INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF COMMUNICATIONS AND THE ARTS, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET

TPG calls for reduction in damaging NBN price

Original article by James Fernyhough
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 14 & 20 : 20-Mar-19

TPG Telecom has posted a 2018-19 interim net profit of $47.4m, which is 76.3 per cent lower than previously. The result was marred by a write-down associated with a decision to shelve plans for its own mobile network. TPG has advised that earnings from its core residential fixed-line broadband business fell 4.8 per cent to $243m during the half-year. CFO Craig Levy has warned that TPG will have to scrap its entry-level national broadband network plan unless NBN Co reduces its wholesale prices for budget plans.

CORPORATES
TPG TELECOM LIMITED – ASX TPM, NBN CO LIMITED, TELSTRA CORPORATION LIMITED – ASX TLS, NEW STREET RESEARCH, GOLDMAN SACHS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, VODAFONE AUSTRALIA LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION

The 2018, 8th Annual Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction Awards: Telecommunications and Utilities Winners

Original article by Roy Morgan
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 8-Mar-19

Australia’s most satisfying home phone, mobile phone, internet, and utilities service providers were recently announced at the 2018 Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction Awards. Optus is the Home Phone Service Provider of the year, with six monthly awards, while Virgin Mobile was named Mobile Phone Service Provider of the year, also with six monthly wins. Meanwhile, iiNet has been named Internet Service Provider for a fourth consecutive year and the Apple iPhone took out the award for Handset Provider for an eighth consecutive year. Red Energy took out the award for Electricity Provider for a fourth successive year, while Kleenheat is the Gas Provider of the year.

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN LIMITED, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, VIRGIN MOBILE (AUSTRALIA) PTY LTD, IINET LIMITED, APPLE PTY LTD, RED ENERGY PTY LTD, KLEENHEAT GAS PTY LTD

TPG soars on Vodafone talks

Original article by Supratim Adhikari, Bridget Carter
The Australian – Page: 19 & 23 : 23-Aug-18

TPG Telecom has advised that it is holding discussions with Vodafone regarding a "merger of equals", as it prepares to launch its own mobile network. TPG already uses Vodafone’s network for its mobile service, while Vodafone in turn uses TPG’s fixed broadband infrastructure. Graeme Ferguson of S&P Global Ratings says the potential merger may affect the Federal Government’s auction of 5G spectrum in November, as both companies were expected to submit bids. TPG shares closed 21 per cent higher at $7.65 on 22 August.

CORPORATES
TPG TELECOM LIMITED – ASX TPM, VODAFONE HUTCHISON AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, S&P GLOBAL RATINGS, CITIGROUP PTY LTD, TELSTRA CORPORATION LIMITED – ASX TLS

NBN compo for 60,000 homes

Original article by Supratim Adhikari
The Australian – Page: 15 : 21-Dec-17

TPG Telecom has agreed to compensate nearly 8,000 customers whose NBN internet access speeds did not match those advertised by the telco. Australian Competition & Consumer Commission chairman Rod Sims says the limitations of fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) technology means that many customers were unlikely to get the speeds that had been advertised. Telstra and Optus had previously agreed to compensate customers using FTTN, and the ACCC expects that other telcos will do so as well.

CORPORATES
TPG TELECOM LIMITED – ASX TPM, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, TELSTRA CORPORATION LIMITED – ASX TLS, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, EXETEL PTY LTD

Crackdown on telcos ‘terrible’ NBN ads

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 22-Aug-17

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission will introduce voluntary standards covering national broadband network advertising by ISPs. Announcing the creation of the standards on 21 August, ACCC chairman Rod Sims described the current standard of NBN advertising by ISPs as "terrible", with ISPs not making it clear in their marketing the internet access speed that customers can expect if they sign up to an NBN plan. ISPs have been given three months to be in compliance with the standards.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, NBN CO LIMITED

NBN draws new homes to ISPs – and prompts switching

Original article by Roy Morgan Research
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 31-Mar-17

A Roy Morgan Single Source survey has found that more than 1.2 million Australian homes were connected to the National Broadband Network (NBN) by the end of 2016. Eleven per cent of these residential NBN customers did not have any fixed internet a year ago. Among non-NBN fixed broadband homes, only five per cent connected for the first time in the last 12 months. The rate of switching is also much higher among NBN homes: 15 per cent switched provider in the last 12 months, compared with nine per cent of non-NBN homes. Combined, a total of 26 per cent of all NBN customers were up for grabs for internet service providers in 2016, either through switching or joining the market, almost double the rate in non-NBN homes.

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN RESEARCH LIMITED

2016 Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction Awards: Telecommunications and Utilities winners revealed

Original article by Roy Morgan Research
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 28-Feb-17

Australia’s most satisfying home phone, mobile phone, internet, and utilities service providers were announced last week at the 2016 Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction Awards. Southern Phone scored its fourth consecutive Home Phone Service Provider award, with a clean sweep of the year’s monthly awards and a peak of 90 per cent of customers satisfied. Internode made it two in a row in the category of Home Broadband Service Provider and claimed all 12 monthly awards in 2016. Meanwhile, iiNet won five monthly awards in the category of Mobile Phone Service Provider, taking out the annual award against strong competition. Red Energy took out the award for Electricity Provider for a second successive year, while Lumo Energy was Gas Provider of the year, with eight monthly awards and a peak of 78% of customers satisfied.

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN RESEARCH LIMITED, SOUTHERN PHONE COMPANY LIMITED, INTERNODE SYSTEMS PTY LTD, IINET LIMITED, RED ENERGY PTY LTD, LUMO ENERGY AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, APPLE PTY LTD