BT boss Philip Jansen urging investors to keep faith in his plans


BT boss Philip Jansen urging investors to keep the faith in his plan to ‘build like fury’ as full-year results loom

BT will report its full-year results on Thursday as boss Philip Jansen seeks to navigate a string of thorny issues. 

The 54-year-old is in the middle of an expensive upgrade of the telecoms company’s broadband network, putting pressure on its finances.

It has forced him to cancel the dividend temporarily, slash costs and sell off ‘non-core’ parts of the business. The firm effectively put BT Sport up for sale last week, with ITV, Amazon and Disney among potential buyers for a partial stake. 

At the same time, BT has been gripped by boardroom turmoil after reported differences between Jansen and chairman Jan du Plessis led to the latter announcing his departure. And the firm is set to report on its pension scheme deficit – expected to be as much as £9billion. 

Jansen is urging investors to keep the faith in his plan to ‘build like fury’, arguing that an upgraded fibre broadband network will bring big returns to the company in future. 

He was boosted recently by a new settlement with regulator Ofcom, which has agreed not to cap prices for top-end internet services. 

In another effort to drum up more cash for investment, Jansen is thought to be looking at selling a stake in network arm Openreach as well. 

In the past year, shareholders seem to have warmed to Jansen’s strategy, with shares up by 60 per cent. But they still remain at historic lows, with the stock closing at 169.6p yesterday – well below 2015’s high of 502.6p. BT is expected to post annual revenues of £23.4billion, up from £22.9bn last year, but a drop in profits from £3billion to £2.1billion. 

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