LONDON, July 25 (Reuters) - Vodafone received no relief from tough market conditions in the first quarter, with a slowdown in Spain and South Africa resulting in another heavy drop in its key revenue measure.
The world's second-biggest mobile operator said the pace of decline in organic service revenue, which strips out items such as handset sales and currency movements, accelerated to 4.2 percent in the three months to June 30. That compared with a rate of 4.0 percent, including a full contribution from Italy, in the last quarter of its past financial year.
Chief Executive Vittorio Colao said the year had started in line with the company's expectations, and its performance had improved in markets such as Germany.
"Through our commercial actions and investment, our performance is beginning to stabilise quarter-on-quarter in several of our European markets, with customer appetite for 4G services clearly growing," he said on Friday.
The limited number of analysts who provide forecasts for the first quarter expected group service revenue to decline by 4.2 percent.
(Reporting by Paul Sandle, Editing by Kate Holton)