Report
Alexandre Roncier ...
  • Joshua Mills
  • Kohulan Paramaguru
  • Sam McHugh

Valuation Station - Earnings Season''s Keystone Cops

Sector underperforms on pandemic volatility and earnings disappointment
July saw 2Q20 earnings kick off in earnest and the sector underperformed the market by 4.8% during the month. Lower churn during lockdown and resilience shown in 1Q, allied with easing across Europe, initially promoted some confidence in the ability of the sector to potentially beat estimates. However there were still disappointments during reporting - namely Vodafone (see Towers and 10+ Questions for Management), TEF, Orange, KPN and even the ever-so reliable Elisa. The sector is still trading relatively cheaply on FCFE yield (46% discount to market, well above long-run average); on an unlevered basis it remains in-line. While we still see some bright spots (see Turning on the US cash machine), fundamentally we still have many concerns over the sector; this has only been exacerbated by Covid-19, see Five minutes of Fame.
Fundamentals still down on 12mth view, with EBIT and OpFCF at c-10% and c-23%
Consensus sales estimates were up +10bps in July, a slowdown vs. the +140bps seen in June. However EBIT was down +170bps (EBITDA -40bps) while capex estimates were down 220bps leading to an overall OpFCF downgrade of -130bps.
Altice(+) and Liberty(=) were winners and TEF(-) and TalkTalk(-) the losers last month
Altice benefitted from a robust beat vs. 2Q20 expectations when it reported, led by stronger EBITDA in France and continued momentum. Liberty was supported by FX tailwinds and ongoing buybacks. We update ests for Altice and Liberty and lift Liberty''s TP to USD22. TEF and TalkTalk also saw performance dictated by results; both failed to shake bearish sentiment on their outlooks which remain challenged in our view, see (Working hard, but under more pressure).
August trade: we prefer DT(+) over Freenet(-)
Results are the only catalysts in an otherwise sleepy August. DT reports on the 13th (T-Mobile US on August 6th); we remain bullish about the prospects of further US...
Underlyings
1&1 Drillisch

Drillisch is a holding company. Co. through its subsidiaries, is a mobile virtual network operator in Germany. The services acquired from the network operators Telekom Deutschland GmbH, Vodafone D2 GmbH, E-Plus Mobilfunk GmbH and Telefonica O2 Germany GmbH & Co. OHG are sold further to the end consumers for Co.'s own account and at rates established by Co. Co. organizes its operations into three segments: telecommunications, which includes its activities in the sector of wireless services; freenet holding, which comprises the operations of its freenet AG subsidiary; and software services, which involves activities related to the development and marketing of a workflow management software.

Airtel Africa

Altice Europe NV A

Altice Europe is a provider of cable, fiber, mobile, telecommunications, content and media in Western Europe (comprising France, Portugal, Belgium, Luxembourg1 and Switzerland), the United States of America (U.S.), Israel, the Dominican Republic and the French overseas territories (comprising Guadeloupe, Martinique, French Guiana, La Reunion and Mayotte). Through its various business operations, Co. provides fixed services, mobile telephony services (other than in the U.S.) and media and advertising services to B2C and B2B customers in all of the geographies in which it operates. In addition, Co. offers a variety of wholesale and other services.

Altice USA

Altice USA is a holding company. Through its subsidiaries, the company is a broadband communications and video services provider and markets its services under Optimum and Suddenlink brands. The company delivers broadband, pay television, telephony services, proprietary content and advertising services to customers in and around the New York metropolitan area and in the south-central U.S., with the majority of its customers located in Texas, West Virginia, Louisiana, Arkansas, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Arizona, California, Missouri and Ohio. The company also provides fiber connectivity, bandwidth and managed services to enterprise customers through its Lightpath business and advertising time to advertisers.

Bouygues S.A.

Bouygues is a global industrial group engaged in designing, building and operating structures in public and private buildings, transportation infrastructure and energy and communication networks. Co. operates in three sectors - Construction (Bouygues Construction, Bouygues Immobilier and Colas), Media (TF1) and Telecom (Bouygues Telecom). Construction is engaged in the design and maintenance of projects in the areas of building, civil works, energies and services; Media offers activities covering the audiovisual sector; and Telecom offers mobile broadband services and prepaid card services for smart phones, as well as a range of services including telemessaging, voice mail and WAP

BT Group PLC

BT is a communications services company, delivering products and services with industry-specific communications solutions and consulting expertise. Co.'s principal activities include: networked IT services; local, national and international telecommunications services; broadband and internet products and services; and converged fixed/mobile products and services. Co. operates five lines of businesses: BT Global Services, BT Business, BT Consumer, BT Wholesale and Openreach, providing services to around 6,500 large corporate and public sector customers, in more than 170 countries worldwide.

Cellnex Telecom SAU

Cellnex Telecom SA is a Spain-based company engaged in the wireless telecommunications (telecom) business. Its activities are divided into three segments: Broadcasting infrastructure, Telecom site rental, as well as Network services and other. The Broadcasting infrastructure division comprises distribution and transmission of television (TV) and frequency modulation (FM) radio signals, operation and maintenance (O&M) of radio broadcasting network, as well as over-the-top (OTT) radio services, among others. The Telecom site rental division provides access to wireless infrastructure, primarily through infrastructure hosting and telecom equipment co-location, mainly for mobile network operators and other wireless and broadband telecom network operators. The Network services and other division offers connectivity services for a variety of telecom operators and radio communication, among others. The Company also develops 5th generation mobile networks (5G) through Alticom BV.

Deutsche Telekom AG

Deutsche Telekom is engaged in the telecommunications services and information technology sectors. Co. operates as an integrated telecommunications provider. It is organized into four operating segments: Germany, Europe, and the United States; and Systems Solutions, as well as Group Headquarters and Shared Services. Co. provides fixed-network lines, broadband lines and mobile communications. Co. also provides customized Information and Communication Technology (ICT) solutions for corporate customers under the T-Systems brand. The Group Headquarters and Shared Services segment comprises cross-segment management functions, real estate services, and mobility solutions, among others.

Elisa Oyj

Elisa is a telecommunications, ICT and online service company that served 2.3 million consumer, corporate and public administration organisation customers as of Dec 31 2014. Co. engages in telecommunications activities and provides ICT and online services in Finland and in selected international market areas. Co. and its subsidiaries' reportable operating segments are Consumer Customers and Corporate Customers. The Consumer Customer segment provides consumers and households with telecommunications services, such as voice and data services. The Corporate Customers segment provides to the corporate and community customers voice and data services, ICT solutions and contact center services.

Euskaltel SA

Euskaltel SA. Euskaltel SA is a Spain-based company engaged in the provision of integrated telecommunication services. The Company's activities are divided into three segments: Residential, Business, as well as Wholesale and Other. The Residential segment provides fixed and mobile telecommunication services, broadband and wireless Internet, as well as digital television (TV) as a single service and in packages. The Business division primarily offers fixed and mobile telephony, as well as Internet access for enterprises. The Wholesale and Other area serves wholesale customers and is responsible for the delivery of communication services, such as infrastructure leasing, information technology (IT) outsourcing, as well as sell of installation material and electronics. The Company operates in the Basque Country, Spain.

Freenet AG

Freenet is a telecommunications provider in Germany. Co. provides its customers a portfolio of services and products, particularly in the field of mobile voice and data services. Co. does not operate its own network, but markets mobile communication services for the mobile network operators Telekom, Vodafone, E-Plus and O2 in Germany, under its own name and on its own account. Apart from its own network-independent postpaid, no-frills and prepaid services, Co. also provides the original network operators' tariffs. Co. operates within two segments: mobile communications and other/holding.

Iliad S.A.

Iliad is an operator in the French internet access & telecommunications markets. Co. divides its operations into three business segments: Broadband, Traditional Telephony, and Retail Telecom. Broadband includes Internet service provider operations, hosting services, user assistance operations & operations related to the rollout of the FTTH (fiber-to-the-home) network. Traditional Telephony includes switched landline telephony (One.Tel and Iliad Telecom), directory services (mainly the ANNU reverse look-up directory accessible by Minitel, telephone, Internet and SMS text messaging) and e-commerce operations (Assunet.com). Retail Telecom offers various mobile phones & services to customers.

Inwit

Infrastrutture Wireless Italiane Spa. Infrastrutture Wireless Italiane SpA, also known as Inwit, is an Italy-based company primarily engaged in telecommunication industry. The Company is active in the operation of wireless telecom facilities and equipment, specifically those dedicated to the hospitality of radio transmission equipment, telecommunications and distribution of television and radio signals. It owns radio transmission equipment for mobile telephony networks. Infrastrutture Wireless Italiane SpA concerns mainly its activities relating to the construction and management of passive infrastructure sites, generally consist of civilian facilities, such as towers , trellises and poles, as well as technological systems, necessary to accommodate the equipment of receiving and transmitting, owned by Telecom Italy and other customers. It operates through Gestione Due Srl.

Liberty Global plc Cl A

Masmovil Ibercom SA

Masmovil Ibercom SA. Masmovil Ibercom SA, formerly World Wide Web Ibercom SA, is a Spain-based company primarily engaged in the telecommunication sector. The Company focuses on the sale and distribution services for Internet, Data Center and Telecommunications. The Company's product and services portfolio comprises Internet access through Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) and Symmetric Digital Subscriber Line (SDSL) technologies, Internet domains and Domains Management and Registration Service through IberDNS application, Web hosting, virtual servers, dedicated servers, telephony services and routers. The Company also offers collocation services through two Internet Data Centers located in Madrid and San Sebastian. It operates through subsidiaries, such as Embou Nuevas Tecnologias SL and Ebesis Sistemas SL, among others. The Company owns a number of brand names, such as Pepephone, Yoigo and Llamaya.

Orange

Orange provides consumers, businesses and other telecommunications operators with a wide range of services including fixed telephony and mobile telecommunications, data transmission, Internet and multimedia, and other services. Co.'s portfolio comprises business lines (fixed-line, mobile, Internet), focusing on all customer segments (small and medium-sized businesses, multinationals), and personal and professional services for home, office, travel, and mobile. Co. manages eight operating segments: France, Poland, Spain, Rest of the Europe, Africa and Middle East, Other non-controlling equity interests, Enterprise Communication Services, and International Carriers and Shared Services.

Orange Belgium

Orange Belgium is a telecommunications operator in Belgium. Co. provides a range of products and services to the residential and business markets, including mobile telephony, fixed telephony, fix data, Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line. Co.'s Belgium segment is divided into two operating units: Mobile as well as Fix voice data. Co.'s Mobile operating unit provides mobile phone equipment and services to residential and corporate customers, while Co.'s Fix voice and data operating unit provides fix voice, data and internet services to residential and corporate customers.

Proximus

Proximus supplies integrated telecommunications services on the Belgian market. Co.'s activities are divided into four segments: Consumer Business Unit (CBU), which sells voice products and services, internet and television, on fixed and mobile networks, to residential customers; Enterprise Business Unit (EBU), which caters to professional customers; Service Delivery Engine and Wholesale, which centralizes all the network and IT services and costs, provides services to CBU and EBU and sells these services to other telecom and cable operators; and International Carrier Services, which focuses on international carrier activities.

Royal KPN N.V.

Koninklijke KPN is an integrated information and communications technology service provider. Co. provides its consumer customers data broadband services, IPTV services, mobile (voice, data and SMS) and fixed line telephony. Co. provides its business customers broadband services, mobile, fixed line and data services. Co. operates in the following segments: Consumer Mobile, which provides mobile services and products; Consumer Residential, which provides services in and around the house; Business, which provides fixed and mobile telephony services; NetCo, which includes fixed wholesale services; Belgium, which provides mobile telephony; and iBasis, which provides wholesale network services.

Sunrise Communications AG

Sunrise Communications Group AG is a Switzerland-based company that provides telecommunication services. The Company provides services in the area of mobile communications, fixed network, Internet and digital television (TV). Sunrise Communications AG also provides Prepaid Cards, Contract Extension, Help and Support services. It offers mobile phones, tablets, modems and Apple-products, as well as accessories such as chargers or phone headphones. Sunrise Communications AG provides its services to its various clients in the private and public sectors across the Swiss market. The Company's brands include Sunrise, Business Sunrise, Gif Me More, yallo, ortel Mobile and Lebara.

Swisscom AG

Swisscom is engaged in providing telecommunication services and is active in Switzerland and Italy. Co. has three operating divisions: Swisscom Switzerland, Fastweb; and Other Operating Segments. Co.'s Swisscom Switzerland divisions comprised of: Residential Customers; Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises; Enterprise Customers; Wholesale; and IT, Network & Innovation. Co.'s Fastweb segment supplies its fixed-network both directly via its own fiber-optic network and also via the unbundled fixed-access lines and wholesale products. Co.'s other operating segments provides ICT solutions for physicians, hospitals and insurers, develops and operates intelligent solutions for energy management.

TalkTalk Telecom Group

TalkTalk Telecom Group provides telecommunication services to retail and B2B customers. Co. provides customers a range of Fixed Low Price Plans, which comprised of: Fast Broadband, a broadband plan designed to cater for the needs of individual users or households that do not require increased download speeds available via a fibre connection; and Faster Fibre Broadband, a broadband plan designed for households with a number of devices that need to be connected to the internet at the same time. In the Direct channel, Co. provides a range of data connectivity solutions, from business broadband and fibre, through to Ethernet circuits and Wide Area Networks.

Tele2 AB Cl B

Tele2 is engaged as a telecom operator. Co. provides mobile communication services, fixed broadband and telephony, data network services and content services. The mobile service comprises various types of subscriptions for residential and business customers as well as prepaid cards. Fixed broadband includes direct access, which is its own services based on access via copper cable and other forms of access, such as fibre networks, wireless broadband and metropolitan area networks. Fixed telephony includes resold products within fixed telephony. The product portfolio within resold fixed telephony consists of prefix telephony, pre-selection (dial the number without a prefix) and subscriptions.

Telecom Italia

Telecom Italia is a telecommunications group based in Italy. Co. is engaged in the communications sector and, particularly, the fixed and mobile national and international telecommunications sector, the television sector and the office products sector. Co. operates mainly in Europe, South America and the Mediterranean Basin. Co.'s operations are organized along two operating segments: Domestic - Italy (providing telephone and data services on fixed-line and mobile networks for final customers (retail) and other operators (wholesale)); and Brazil (operates in the mobile phone, fixed telephony, in long-distance and data transmission markets in Brazil).

Telefonica Deutschland Holdings

Telefonica Deutschland Holding is a telecommunication company. Co. offers its consumer retail and business customers postpaid and prepaid wireless communications products, along with wireless data services using Global Packet Radio Service, Universal Mobile Telecommunications System and Long Term Evolution technology as well as Digital Subscriber Line wireline telephony and high-speed internet services. Co. markets its products and its wireless and wireline communications products as well as services via the core brand O2. Co.'s secondary brands include the brands Fonic and netzclub. Co. also markets high-speed DSL internet access and wireline telephony.

Telefonica S.A.

Telefonica is engaged in the provision of public or private telecommunications services, including ancillary or complementary telecommunications services or related services. Co.'s fixed business includes: traditional fixed telecommunication services, Internet and broadband multimedia services, data and business-aplications services, and wholesale services for telecommunication operators. Co. also provides a range of mobile and related services and products to consumer and business customers, including mobile voice services, value added services, mobile data and Internet services, wholesale services, corporate services, roaming, fixed wireless, and, trunking and paging.

Telenet Group Holding NV

Telenet Group Holding is a holding company. Through its subsdiairies and its broadband network, Co. is engaged in the provision of cable television, including television services, broadband internet and telephony services to residential subscribers in Flanders and certain communes in Brussels as well as broadband internet, data and voice services in the business market throughout Belgium and parts of Luxembourg. In addition, Co. is engaged in the provision of mobile telephony services through a mobile virtual network operator partnership with Mobistar NV.

Telenor ASA

Telenor is a holding company. Through its subsidiaries, Co. operates as a telecommunication company. Co. provides mobile communication, fixed line communication, and broadcasting activities. Co.'s mobile communication business includes voice, data, Internet, content services, customer equipment and messaging. Fixed service comprise telephony, Internet and television (TV), leased lines as well as data services and managed services. Broadcast comprises Canal Digital DTH in the Nordics, satellite broadcasting, terrestrial radio and TV transmission in Norway and Belgium and encryption related services for TV distribution.

Telia Co AB

Telia Company provides telecommunication services in the Nordic and Baltic countries, the markets of Eurasia, including Russia, Turkey and Spain. Co. has three business segments: Mobility Services, which comprises operations in Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Spain; Broadband Services, which comprises operations in Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Lithuania, Latvia (49.0%), Estonia and international carrier operations; and Eurasia, which comprises mobile operations in Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Georgia, Moldova and Nepal. The business area also includes Co.'s shareholdings in OAO MegaFon, Russia and Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri A.S., Turkey.

United Internet AG

United Internet AG. United Internet AG is a Germany-based Internet service provider (ISP) and holding company of the United Internet Group. The Company's products and technical services are divided into two key segments. The Access segment comprises narrowband, broadband and mobile access subscriptions, including the corresponding applications. The Applications segment includes such applications as home pages, e-shops, Personal Information Management applications, group work, online storage and office software. The Application segment also includes the operations of the Company's brands Sedo and affilinet, which serve customers performance-based advertising and sales possibilities. The Company's brand portfolio also includes GMX, WEB.DE, 1&1, united-domains, Fasthosts and InterNetX. In addition, the Company develops Internet based applications, such as cloud applications. The Company acts primarily via its wholly owned subsidiary 1&1 Internet AG, and Sedo Holding AG, in which it holds a majority stake.

Vodafone Group PLC

Vodafone Group provides mobile and fixed telecommunication services including: access charges, voice and video calls, messaging, interconnect fees, fixed and mobile broadband and related services such as providing televisual and music content, connection fees and equipment sales. Co. provides a range of consumer products and services including mobile, fixed voice, broadband and television, financial as well as other services to operators outside its footprint. Co. also provides a range of enterprise products and services including total communications such as mobile, fixed and a suite of converged communications services, internet of things, cloud and hosting and carrier services.

Provider
Exane
Exane

Exane BNP Paribas is a top-ten broker for European equities, bolstered by the expansion of a strong platform in London, which was the engine behind the group's European strategy.

Exane BNP Paribas's 115 analysts cover about 600 European stocks (75% of which are non-French), and work closely with a 120 sales and sales-trading team. The group thus benefits from critical mass and acknowledged expertise in this business line, in which it continues to pursue a sustained and ambitious investment policy.

Exane BNP Paribas serves more than 1,200 institutional investors worldwide from a base of 9 offices (Paris, London, Frankfurt, Geneva, Madrid, Milan, Stockholm, New York and Singapore).

 

Continued investment in both research and execution

 Exane BNP Paribas's sound and balanced model is based on:

  • Independent, fundamental Pan-European company and industry research.
  • Analysts have worked within the industries they follow. Rigorous financial analysis underpins their qualitative work.
  • Experienced sales teams located locally in all the major financial centres globally, led by London, Paris and New York.
  • A comprehensive range of execution services: high-touch sales trading, facilitation, electronic trading, program trading and ETFs.

 

An innovative partnership with BNP Paribas

 Since 2004 the cash equities business has been underpinned by an operational partnership with BNP Paribas under which Exane has exclusivity on European equities in this segment under the Exane BNP Paribas brand.

Under this agreement, Exane BNP Paribas lends its expertise in equity research to BNP Paribas' business lines. The two groups also collaborate closely on ECM (Equity Capital Market) transactions, with BNP Paribas handling origination and Exane BNP Paribas distribution.

This balanced partnership has enhanced Exane's strength in the cash equities business, enabling it to accelerate its growth in Europe and sustain its investment strategy throughout the cycle, while still preserving its independence.

Analysts
Alexandre Roncier

Joshua Mills

Kohulan Paramaguru

Sam McHugh

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