KPN shares fall after 4G deal prompts dividend cut

AP News
Posted: Dec 17, 2012 6:27 AM

AMSTERDAM (AP) — Shares in Dutch telecommunications company Royal KPN NV have fallen sharply Monday over fears the company has once again paid too much in a mobile auction.

The company said after the close of trading on Friday it had paid €1.35 billion ($1.8 billion) to obtain frequencies for "4G," or fourth generation, high-speed mobile Internet services through 2030. KPN said it would slash dividends in 2012 and 2013 as a result. By mid-morning shares were down 13 percent at €4.01.

Back in 2000, the company spent more than €10 billion on 3G frequencies in the Netherlands, Germany and Britain. It wound up having to issue new shares with state support to avoid bankruptcy. Shares lost almost all their value, and the frequencies were later rented at lower prices.