Connecting everybody to
live a better today and build a better tomorrow.
Our businesses play an integral role in the daily lives of our customers and are a vital part of the national infrastructure upon which the economies in which we operate depend on. We take this responsibility very seriously as reflected in our sustainable business strategy, robust risk management and strong governance.
Our sustainable business strategy is founded on our commitment to responsible behaviour in everything we do. Our intention is to work towards three significant global transformation goals – women's empowerment, energy innovation and youth skills and jobs – to deliver meaningful socioeconomic benefits for our customers and wider society.
We have a global framework for identifying and managing risk within our defined tolerance, both at an operational and strategic level. The framework has been designed to provide the Executive Committee and Board with a clear line of sight over risk and to enable informed decision making.
Good governance flows throughout our business and a commitment to operating with integrity is central to the Group’s culture. Our culture has evolved over time reflecting our growth, changing consumer behaviours and expectations, shifts in regulatory and legal requirements as well as changing attitudes towards the role of large corporations in society.
Key performance indicators
We achieved our goal of over 90% coverage across Europe, reaching 92% including VodafoneZiggo, this year.
Our goal is to be NPS leader in all our markets. We continued to make good progress this year, but further improvements are needed, particularly in the UK.
Diversity increases the range and breadth of skills in our business and increased female representation is one measure of this. We aim to increase this proportion every year.
Our target is to achieve this in all 22 of our controlled operations (excluding India, JVs and associates).
Our expanded 4G customer base has increased data usage by 65%. In Europe the average smartphone user now consumes 1.7 GB of data each month.
Our core European mobile enterprise services continue to face challenging market conditions. Therefore, we are seeking to diversify into fixed and related enterprise services to offset these pressures.
We aim to continually increase our NGN reach and have the largest NGN footprint in Europe with 36 million homes passed by our own cable and fibre and a further 60 million via wholesale access and partnerships.
We aim to grow our fixed broadband customer base continuously. During the year, we added 1.5 million new customers, taking the total base to 17.9 million (including 3.2 million from VodafoneZiggo). Within this we added 0.7 million converged customers.
|Of which, consumer converged customers|
Our goal is to continue to grow our service revenue. We met this goal again this year.
Growth in adjusted EBITDA supports our free cash flow which helps fund investment and shareholder returns. Our adjusted EBITDA grew organically by 5.8% this year. On a guidance basis, which includes India, it grew 3.4%, consistent with our guidance of 3% to 6% organic growth.
Cash generation is key to delivering strong shareholder returns. We delivered €4.1 billion of free cash flow in 2017. On a guidance basis, which includes India, our free cash flow was €4.3 billion, consistent with our free cash flow guidance of at least €4.0 billion.
This year we increased the dividend per share by 2%. In line with our reporting currency our dividends are now based in Euros.