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Greece - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

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Last updated: 18 Apr 2020 Update History

Report Pages: 212

Funding approved for Greece’s Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFBB) project

Greece’s telecom market continues to suffer from tough economic conditions, with long-term financial strain on the public still telling on telco revenue and investment. However, there are signs of recovery and renewed confidence. The dominant player OTE, which has experienced significant challenges but is supported by the organisational and financial clout of its parent Deutsche Telekom, reported a 2.9% increase in revenue for 2019, the first such growth since 2008.

Broadband penetration in Greece is developing steadily despite the difficult economic conditions. The main operators are concentrating investment on fibre-based next generation networks, enabling them to reach the European broadband targets for 2025. Their work is also supported by government ultra-fast broadband projects, largely funded by the European Commission (EC), aimed at delivering a service of at least 100Mb/s to underserved areas. Some €233 million in funding was approved in February 2020.

Greece’s well-developed mobile market is dominated by the three mobile network operators Wind Hellas, Vodafone Greece and Cosmote. Operators continue to invest in LTE infrastructure and technologies to provide networks capable of meeting customer demand for data services. Although the MNOs have trialled 5G since 2019, commercial services await the auction of suitable spectrum: the regulator expects to auction spectrum in the 3.4-3.8GHz range later in 2020, followed by 700MHz spectrum in 2021.

This report introduces the key aspects of the Greek fixed-line telecoms, wholesale and IT market, outlining the regulatory environment, assessing the major players and providing relevant operational data and financial statistics on both the operators and the market. The report also covers the fixed-line broadband segment, as also the mobile voice and data markets, covering regulatory and sector developments as well as reviews of the key players.

BuddeComm notes that the outbreak of the Coronavirus in 2020 is having a significant impact on production and supply chains globally. During the coming year the telecoms sector to various degrees is likely to experience a downturn in mobile device production, while it may also be difficult for network operators to manage workflows when maintaining and upgrading existing infrastructure. Overall progress towards 5G may be postponed or slowed down in some countries.

On the consumer side, spending on telecoms services and devices is under pressure from the financial effect of large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes. However, the crucial nature of telecom services, both for general communication as well as a tool for home-working, will offset such pressures. In many markets the net effect should be a steady though reduced increased in subscriber growth.

Although it is challenging to predict and interpret the long-term impacts of the crisis as it develops, these have been acknowledged in the industry forecasts contained in this report.

The report also covers the responses of the telecom operators as well as government agencies and regulators as they react to the crisis to ensure that citizens can continue to make optimum use of telecom services. This can be reflected in subsidy schemes and the promotion of tele-health and tele-education, among other solutions.

Key developments

  • Government extends fibre subsidy scheme to the business sector;
  • Regulator extends consultation for the 2020 multi-spectrum auction;
  • EC approves €223 million for Greece’s Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFBB) project;
  • Vodafone closes down the MVNO Cyta Mobile, plans to repurpose 3G network assets for LTE and 5G by 2022;
  • Cosmote, Vodafone and Wind Hellas pay €201.45 million to extend 1800MHz licences to end-2035;
  • Cosmote trials carrier aggregation technology providing data at up to 1.2Gb/s, launches LTE-A Pro services;
  • OTE extends Smart City projects to Halkida and Patras;
  • Report update includes the regulator's market review and annual report for 2018, market data for 2019, telcos' operating and financial data to Q4 2019, Telecom Maturity Index charts and analyses, assessment of the global impact of COVID-19 on the telecoms sector, recent market development.

Companies mentioned in this report

Vodafone Greece, OTE (Cosmote), Wind Hellas, Forthnet (Nova), Wind Hellas, On Telecoms, Tellas, On Telecoms

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