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France Telecom Leads European Broadband

With 7.6 million broadband subscribers at the end of 2005, France Telecom remains the largest broadband service provider in Europe, according to the latest Strategy Analytics study.

At the end of 2005, the 76 service providers in the database accounted for more than 52 million broadband subscriptions in 20 European countries, an increase of 53 percent from the same period in 2004. This represents 86 percent of the total 2005 European broadband market.

After a strong fourth quarter for Telecom Italia, in which they gained one million new subscribers, the Italian incumbent reclaimed the number two position on the European top-list from Deutsche Telekom's broadband division T-Online. Struggling with growth in France and Germany, AOL, Telefonica surpassed AOL for the first time in 12 months.

For the first time in 18 months, NTL's inclusion of the merged Telewest network saw it edge in front of UK incumbent, BT. Vodafone-owned, German competitive operator, Arcor, continued to show strong growth, climbing from the number 19 spot to number 16, and overtaking three incumbents (PT, TDC and Belgacom) in the process.

"Today France Telecom remains the undisputed largest broadband service provider in Europe," said Senior Analyst, Martin Olausson. "However, with several large competitive operators still standing as acquisition targets in Europe, that could quickly change."

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