An increase in mobile users of almost 10% to 128.8 million helped France Telecom increase its subscriber base to 189.1 million, up 6.6% year on year September 2009. Revenues were flat at €38.1bn for the first nine months of 2009.
The recession has not helped either, making it hard to find profits. Profits in Africa and the Middle East rose 5.2%, but Romania crashed 18.1%, and the normally profitable Enterprise segment was down 2.8% year-on-year.
Earnings before interest, tax and depreciation were down slightly to 35.1%, down 0.7 points on a year ago, helping to cut capital spending 1.8% to 9.8% of revenues. The telco confirmed its advice on cash flow, which should be steady at €8.0bn, it said.
CEO Didier Lombard said revenues from France were up 0.6% and the take-up of new services continued to spread, particularly those related to 3G and digital TV offers.
"We are currently in negotiations with trade unions on a new social contract that will be proposed to employees and will form an integral part of the group's development in France," he said.