Spain's Telefonica gives an upbeat forecast for sales growth over the next two years despite restructuring costs in Germany and a hit from a weaker Venezuelan currency. Hayley Platt reports
Europe's third biggest telecoms company is getting bigger. Spain's Telefonica expects 2015 sales to grow by 7 percent this year and 5 percent next year. It's putting one-off factors such as a weaker Venezuelan currency and restructuring costs in Germany behind it. And now plans to focus on core markets in Spain, Germany and Brazil. It's already offloaded units in Ireland and the Czech Republic. And last month it agreed to sell its British O2 business to Hutchison Whampoa for up to 10.25 billion pounds. That could help the company cut its debt to around 35 billion euros Revenues stabilised in its key home market and shareholders can expect an annual dividend of 0.75 euros over the next two year. Telefonica's has one of the highest dividend yields in the sector - it's share price though fell slightly after the results.