Vodafone profit doubles despite slump in UK business

LONDON - Vodafone doubled its pre-tax profit in the financial year to 31 March, as the telecoms brand achieved significant growth in new markets but suffered a 7 per cent drop in UK revenues.

Pre-tax profit rose from £4.2bn in 2009 to £8.7bn in 2010, while group revenues grew year-on-year from £41bn to £44.4bn.

Vodafone's revenues increased 46 per cent to £8bn in Africa and Central Europe, while revenues for the company's Asia Pacific and Middle East division grew 11 per cent to £6.5bn.

However, performance in Vodafone's domestic UK market suffered. Revenue slid 7 per cent year-on-year to £5bn, while service revenue fell 4.7 per cent due to "intense competition and economic pressures".

"We are creating a stronger Vodafone, which is positioned to return to revenue growth during the 2011 financial year, as economic recovery should benefit our key markets," said chief executive Vittorio Colao.

During the previous 12 months, Vodafone moved to a more centralised marketing structure in an effort to "eliminate overlapping areas and co-ordinate activities". A global campaign, by WPP agency Santo, was launched last September under the brand strapline ‘Power to you'.

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