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Czech Republic reverses Huawei ban; NEC buying Danish IT company

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Czech Republic reverses Huawei ban; NEC buying Danish IT company

TOP NEWS

* The Czech National Security Council has reversed a warning issued by the country's cybersecurity regulator against the use of equipment made by Chinese tech company Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd., Telecompaper reports. Following a discussion on the matter, the council ruled that the warning had no basis from a technological perspective.

* Japanese tech company NEC Corp. said it agreed to buy KMD Holding ApS, the holding company of Danish IT company KMD A/S, for about 8 billion Danish kroner from private equity investor Advent International Corp. The acquisition is expected to close by the end of February 2019.

* BBC Studios' executive vice president for Asia, David Weiland, spoke to S&P Global Market Intelligence about the company's efforts to gain a deeper foothold in China and its multi-strategic approach in Asian markets.

UK AND IRELAND

* CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd. unit Hutchison 3G UK Ltd. is under pressure to review its links with Huawei, following the companies' £2 billion agreement with the Chinese company to build 5G networks in Britain, London's The Daily Telegraph reports. U.K. Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson had earlier expressed "very deep concerns" over Huawei's role in a 5G rollout in the country.

* Reality format "Celebrity Big Brother" topped the list of most complained about TV programs in the U.K. in 2018, according to figures by British media and telecom watchdog Ofcom. The figures showed that during the year, Ofcom received 27,602 complaints about the show.

GERMANY, SWITZERLAND AND AUSTRIA

* Vodafone Group PLC unit Vodafone GmbH has turned on the first antenna in Bavaria state using a mast reserved for public authorities. The new station will provide more than 5,000 residents with LTE services in the districts of Dingolfing-Landau and Rottal-Inn.

* Deutsche Telekom AG said it has restructured nine departments within its management board, which will take effect Jan. 1, 2019. The board departments include ones for Germany, Europe, technology and innovation, T-Systems International GmbH, human resources, data privacy, legal affairs and compliance, finance and the newly formed USA & group development.

* Germany's Federal Network Agency imposed more than €1.1 million in fines for unauthorized telemarketing in 2018. The agency received more than 58,000 written complaints over unauthorized telemarketing up to the end of November, more than double the figure from 2016 that stood at 27,000.

FRANCE

* French data privacy watchdog CNIL imposed a €250,000 fine on Bouygues Telecom SA for insufficiently protecting the data of its B&You users. The fault allowed access to customers' contracts and invoices by simply modifying a URL address on the telco's website.

* Unable to meet deployment commitments, the syndicate SMO PACA THD has terminated the public service delegation contract PACT Fibre, which brought together Altitude Infrastructure and Caisse des Dépôts, in favor of a private offer to be provided by Altice France SA's SFR, ZDNet reports. Parent company Altice Europe will invest a total of €217 million in the Hautes-Alpes department and deploy nearly 134,000 connections by 2022, as well as pay the €80 million related to the termination of the contract.

* Publisher Groupe Sipa Ouest-France said its printing facility in Nantes was blocked overnight by a group claiming to belong to the "yellow vests" movement. The company was unable to distribute more than 180,000 copies of the Ouest-France, Presse Océan and Courrier de l'Ouest newspapers on Dec. 27.

NETHERLANDS, BELGIUM AND LUXEMBOURG

* Google LLC has been given the green light to build a new data center in the Dutch municipality of Hollands Kroon, DutchITChannel reports. The new data center will be built in Wieringermeer, where a similar facility operated by Microsoft Corp. is located.

* Proximus has said it does not see any concrete elements right now that cause worry concerning Huawei, after various countries have expressed worries about the security of the company's infrastructure, Het Laatste Nieuws reports. The Belgian operator added it has not yet decided whether Huawei will be involved in the rollout of its new 5G network.

* Dutch premium TV service Ziggo Sport reported a turnover of €71.3 million in 2017, an increase of 21.8% compared to 2016, Telecompaper reports. The growth in turnover is mainly due to a growth in the number of Ziggo Sport Total customers, a higher contribution from Ziggo to the Ziggo Sport channel and growth in advertising revenue and barter sales.

NORDIC COUNTRIES

* Spotify Technology SA's settlement with independent music publisher Wixen Music Publishing Inc. is unlikely to be more than between $30 million and $40 million, according to Stifel analyst John Egbert, The Fly reports. This would be in keeping with the size and scope of previous settlements, and it could be even smaller, Egbert said.

* Swedish broadband solutions company InCoax Networks AB has received approval for listing on the Nasdaq First North stock exchange in Stockholm. The first day of trading will be Jan 3, 2019.

SOUTHERN EUROPE

* Spanish regional cable operator Euskaltel SA and mobile services provider MásMóvil Ibercom SA have clinched a deal to jointly build a shared 5G pilot network, Telecompaper reports, citing Expansión.

* Wind Tre SpA rolled out its gigabit broadband services in the Italian city of Forli, through the network of Enel SpA unit Enel Open Fiber SpA, Telecompaper reports.

EASTERN EUROPE

* Media Telecom, a joint venture between Rostelecom PJSC and National Media Group, has secured a deal to become the exclusive distributor of Fox Networks Group Inc.'s channels in Russia, Broadband TV News reports, citing AKTR and Media Sputnik. Fox Networks Group is a unit of 21st Century Fox Inc.

* Mikhail Demin is stepping down as director general of Russian direct-to-home operator NTV-Plus on Dec. 30 after the expiry of his three-year term, Broadband TV News reports. Natalya Gorbunova will take over Demin's post in an acting capacity.

FEATURED RESEARCH

Economics of Networks: Economics of Basic Cable Networks 2018: Cord cutting and cord shaving have taken their toll on the cable network industry. But even with these headwinds, cash flow margins remain well ahead of many other media sectors.

Wireless Investor: 28 GHz auction crawls toward an early January finish line: Auction 101, with 3,072 28 GHz licenses in 1,536 counties in the U.S. for sale, is winding down. In 24 days of bidding it has raised almost $690 million, implying slightly more than a penny per MHz pop for the spectrum.

Daniela Latini, Sylvia Edwards Davis, Charlotte van Hek and Esben Svendsen contributed to this report.

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