© Reuters

Vodafone has continued to struggle for growth in a number of key markets after reporting a 7 per cent drop in revenue to €11bn in the third quarter.

The telecoms company’s performance has been hit in markets such as Spain, Italy and South Africa, which has clouded its attempts to produce more consistent results.

The drop in quarterly revenue was attributed to foreign exchange movements, the sale of its Qatari business and the adoption of new accounting standards, the company said on Friday. Its organic service revenue growth slowed to 0.1 per cent from 0.5 per cent although Vodafone said the rate was 0.4 per cent based on the IFRS15 standards which it has adopted.

European revenue dipped 1.1 per cent due to tough conditions in Italy and Spain while sales outside its home continent increased 4.9 per cent, lower than the 7.7 per cent recorded in the second quarter.

Nick Read, chief executive of Vodafone, pointed to a reduction in churn and an improved commercial performance, with 747,000 mobile customers and 341,000 broadband users added during the quarter, as a cause for optimism.

“We have executed at pace this quarter and have improved the consistency of our commercial performance,” said Mr Read. “Lower mobile contract churn across our markets and improved customer trends in Italy and Spain are encouraging, however these have not yet translated into our financial results, with a similar revenue trend in Europe to second quarter,” he said.

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