“This has been a challenging year for BT. We’ve faced headwinds in the UK public sector and international corporate markets and must learn from what we found in our Italian business. Openreach also received a fine from Ofcom after an investigation into historical Deemed Consent practices revealed it fell short of the high standards we expect. We take these issues extremely seriously and are putting in place new measures, controls and people to prevent them happening again. Learning from the challenges of this year will make BT a stronger company for the future.
“However, we’ve also made good progress in a number of areas. Our integration of EE is going well, our UK consumer, SME and corporate businesses are performing strongly, and we’ve made significant progress in improving customer experience across the group. Our agreement with Ofcom on Openreach governance brings to an end a period of uncertainty. And securing exclusive rights to top-flight European football until 2021 puts our consumer businesses in a strong position.
“We’ve undertaken a strategic review of Global Services. Technology trends mean that we are now less dependent on owning physical local network assets around the world, creating the opportunity to reposition Global Services as a more focused digital business. We are therefore restructuring our Global Services organisation to enable this strategic refocusing.
“We’re also accelerating and expanding our cost transformation programmes, most significantly in our central Group Functions, in Technology, Service and Operations, as well as in several other lines of business. This will help offset market and regulatory pressures and create the capacity for future investment.
“We aspire to be the UK’s digital champion. To achieve this, we’re ready to invest in the UK’s digital infrastructure, in continued improvements in our customer service, and in new technologies to further enhance customer experience. To that end, Openreach has today announced that it’s consulting with customers and industry stakeholders on the business case that could support better rural broadband and a large scale Fibre-to-the-premises rollout across the UK.”