TalkTalk shares plummet after it posts £75m loss

TalkTalk shares plummet after it posts £75m loss

Headline EBITDA for the 1st-half was GBP 95 million (excluding MVNO loss), compared to GBP 144 million a year earlier, with a statutory operating loss of GBP 42 million, compared to a year-earlier profit of GBP 44 million.

Chief exec Tristia Harrison said: "When we simplified and reset the business in May we said our priorities were growth, cash and [earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization] in that order".

Net exceptional costs were incurred in relation to decommissioning, asset write-offs, provision releases, onerous supplier commitments and redundancies, said the business.

TalkTalk has been trying to reinstate its standing as a budget internet provider after its reputation took a hit from a cyber attack in 2015, which saw the personal data of more than 150,000 customers stolen. "Our revised strategy of focusing the business on fewer, clearer priorities is re-establishing TalkTalk as the value provider of choice in the United Kingdom fixed connectivity market".

TalkTalk said its broadband base had grown for the third successive quarter and managed to hold onto customers better than it had been doing a year ago.

"The first half performance shows we are delivering on that plan".

TalkTalk also took a £59m exceptional charge for costs "associated with implementing changes to the Group's organisational structure under the new leadership team".

Harrison said the firm had achieved this despite "an uncertain economic environment".

The company said it would launch a "simple and compelling new mobile proposition" by the end of the year.