By Gwénaëlle Barzic
PARIS, Nov 13 (Reuters) - Telecoms group Iliad said third quarter revenues rose 1.7 percent, helped by its recent entry into Italy but it faced tougher competition in its domestic French market where the company had fewer mobile and fixed subscribers in the quarter.
Iliad, founded by billionaire Xavier Niel and which aims to launch its new set-top box bundling voice, internet and TV services by Christmas, said it expected sales growth to accelerate in the coming quarters.
“The box will be under the Christmas tree,” CEO Thomas Reynaud told Reuters.
Iliad said third quarter sales had risen to 1.24 billion euros ($1.40 billion).
Iliad entered the Italian market earlier this year and it said it had over 2.23 million subscribers in Italy by the end of September, although group revenues in France edged down 0.4 percent.
The company said it had 90,000 fewer mobile subscribers at the end of September and the number of broadband customers also fell in the period.
It said it aimed too generate approximately 1 billion euros in EBITDA less capital expenditure in France from 2020, as well as achieve consolidated EBITDA margin in France of over 40 percent by 2020.
Iliad competes in France with rivals such as market leader Orange, Bouygues Telecom and Altice .
$1 = 0.8864 euros Additional reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta and Dominique Vidalon Editing By Bate Felix