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The sacking of Italy’s mobile networks: Iliad entrance likely to drop market value

The May 2018 entrance of Illiad into the Italian mobile market will likely see average monthly mobile revenue per customer drop by 15% over the next six years. Illiad aggressively undercut existing mobile data prices, launching rolling monthly contracts for just €5.99. The offer included 30GB of data and combined it with a series of first-come-first-serve flash sales for the first million subscribers. Iliad continued with its promotional strategy, eventually signing up over 2m subscribers in its first four months of operation.

As a majority prepay market, (>60% of mobile subscriptions are pay-as-you-go), Italian subscribers can switch mobile operators easily. Operators have been quick to react, increasing the call and data allowance of bundles as well introducing limited offers of their own. Wind increased its data allocation to 70GB for €15, while TIM introduced a new 2000 minutes and 20GB data allocation for €10 to try and slow Iliad’s growth. With the recent Italian 5G auction, Italian telcos committed to pay over €6.5bn in license fees over the next five years. As ARPUs continue to decline, subscriber retention will be critical for operators to ensure positive financial results.