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BT promises broadband price cuts

British Telecommunications will announce "significant" price cuts on its wholesale broadband services within the next two weeks.

British Telecommunications will announce "significant" price cuts on its wholesale broadband services within the next two weeks.

The company had been expected to announce details of the cuts at a news conference today (7 February) when it reported its financial results for the third quarter ending 31 December 2001.

Despite the delay, e-commerce minister Douglas Alexander said: "The approach announced by BT today is welcome news. As e-commerce minister I publicly challenged BT five months ago to set fair, lower prices for businesses and consumers, so they must work to translate these ambitions into achievements."

BT Group reported a pretax profit excluding one-off items of £850m, compared to £760m a year ago.

During the quarter the company sold its mobile subsidiary, mmO2, and wound up its Concert Communications partnership with AT&T. Excluding these and other operations that have been discontinued, the company reported a pretax profit on continuing operations, excluding exceptional items, of £381m, down from £483m for the same quarter last year.

The group reported a year-on-year drop in revenue for the quarter, from £5.25bn to £5.07bn. However, revenue from continuing operations rose, from £4.37bn to £4.66bn and the company reduced its debt by £2.9bn to £13.6bn during the quarter.

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