Deutsche Telekom reports rise in net loss

Deutsche Telekom has posted a fourth-quarter net loss, blaming costs linked to a technically troubled toll system that it is...

Deutsche Telekom has posted a fourth-quarter net loss, blaming costs linked to a technically troubled toll system that it is developing with car maker DaimlerChrysler.

The group's net loss in the fourth quarter grew to €364m from €77m in the same period a year earlier. The loss resulted mainly from €442m in charges to cover the company's exposure to the satellite-based Toll Collect truck toll system, which has been delayed because of technical problems.

Fourth-quarter net revenue for Deutsche Telekom, Europe's largest telecommunication company, rose slightly to €14.55bn from €14.51bn a year earlier.

For the business year 2003, Deutsche Telekom reported net income of €1.3bn after a record loss of €24.6bn in 2002.

The operator slashed net debt to €46.6bn at the end of last year from €61.1bn at the end of 2002.

Deutsche Telekom said it expected earnings of at least €19.2bn this year.

John Blau writes for IDG News Service

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