Abertis grows revenues by 27%

Iñaki Ferreras

Spain's main signal distribution operator Abertis Telecom saw its revenues grow 27% in the first half of this year due to price increases, wider deployment of DTT and its enlarged shareholding in satellite operator Hispasat.

EBITDA grew 47.6%, or 12% of its total activities. Net profit reached €332 million compared with €331 million a year ago.

But not all is good news for this signal distribution 'de facto' monopoly as the Telecommunications Market Commission (CMT) - the official regulator of this market in Spain - has obliged the company to give European satellite operator SES Astra access to to its signal distribution network.

Abertis will be forced to facilitate the placement of Astra's antennas in its technical facilities although the company is not obliged to connect them to its equipment or to share all information about the configuration of its network.

This is another chapter of the conflict between both operators after Astra accused Abertis of taking advantage of its dominant position in Spain's telecommunications market. In May, Abertis Telecom was officially named 'the operator with the highest power in the country's market' which entails some specific obligations. Among these are allowing third parties access to its broadcasting centres at regulated prices.