Carphone stays quiet on merger as revenues rise

Kasmira Jefford
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MOBILE phone retailer Carphone Warehouse stayed silent yesterday on the progress of its potential £4bn merger with Dixons Retail as it posted a rise in fourth quarter revenues across its core business.

The group did not comment on its talks with Dixons Retail, however discussions are understood to be progressing well with an announcement expected before the deadline set by the Takeover Panel of 19 May.

The two retailers extended the deadline of 24 March, which was originally set by the Panel when they revealed they were in talks in February.

Dixons chief executive Sebastian James is expected to head one of the high street’s biggest chains if talks with Carphone Warehouse lead to a merger, with Carphone’s chairman Sir Charles Dunstone expected to become chair of the new group.

Carphone said revenue at CPW Group stores open over a year rose 2.3 per cent in the quarter to 29 March, helped by growing demand for 4G superfast mobile broadband products.

However, the firm said revenue at its Virgin Mobile France joint venture fell 8.6 per cent, reflecting fierce competition in the French market.

The group has been expanding its presence in Europe by partnering with retailers to open concessions within their stores. In the Netherlands it has partnered with Media-Markt Saturn and it is also in talks with Metro Group in Germany.

It also has 31 stores in seven countries in partnership with Samsung.