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Vodafone: tower unit's IPO on track for early 2021

( - Vodafone said on Friday that it is on course to list its tower infrastructure unit in Frankfurt in early 2021 and announced a decline in organic service revenue for the quarter ended 30 June.

Vantage Towers - Europe's largest mobile and fixed services provider - will unlock further value for shareholders through the IPO, Vodafone CEO Nick Read said in a statement.

Düsseldorf-based Vantage owns 68,000 sites across nine markets, with controlling stakes in eight countries (Germany, Spain, Greece, Portugal, Czech Republic, Romania, Hungary and Ireland).

Vodafone said the portfolio of Cornerstone Telecommunications Infrastructure Limited (CTIL) - which has 14,300 towers in the UK - may be added with the inclusion of the group's 50% stake in CTIL.

Vantage Towers will also own a 33.2% stake in INWIT in Italy, with co-control rights down to a shareholding of 25% under the terms of an agreement with Telecom Italia.

Alongside this announcement, Vodafone reported a 1.3% rise in first-quarter revenue, helped by resilient performance in Germany.

But stripping out currency effects and acquisitions, the world's largest mobile operator said that organic service revenue fell by 1.3% in the three months to 30 June.

The shares were down over 3% in London after this trading update.

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