BT share price: Jefferies concerned about Amazon threat to group
Analysts at Jefferies continue to see BT Group (LON:BT.A) as a ‘hold,’ after the former telecoms monopoly tried to allay concerns that Amazon Prime could pick off the best programmes and undermine its expansion into broadcasting. The comments come ahead of an auction for the broadcast rights to Champions League and Europa League football in the UK, expected in coming months.
BT’s share price gained ground in the previous session, adding 1.36 percent to close at 366.45p, outperforming the benchmark FTSE 100 index which climbed 0.62 percent to 6,819.72 points. The telco’s shares have lost a little over a quarter of their value over the past year, and are down by some 22 percent in the year-to-date.
Jefferies reiterated its ‘hold’ rating on BT yesterday, and a price target of 400p on the shares, following a meeting with the company in which it refused to discuss its clash with regulator Ofcom over the potential spin-off of its infrastructure division Openreach.
“With BT declining to comment on Ofcom/Openreach, [our] meeting concentrated on how consumer growth can be sustained,” the bank’s analyst Jerry Dellis pointed out, as quoted by Citywire, adding that the Champions League auction was a focus.
Chief executive of BT consumer John “Petter acknowledges the Amazon bid risk but sees the need to build a 24/7 schedule around core rights as an impediment,” the analyst continued. “We see the Amazon Prime model as cherry-picking key content and that creating a 24/7 schedule is not necessary.”
The comments come after BT’s chief executive Gavin Patterson recently signalled that there was a limit to what the former telecoms monopoly was willing to pay to secure the broadcast rights to Champions League and Europa League football in the UK. European football became the backbone of BT Sport after the FTSE 100 company outbid rivals in 2013.
As of 07:54 GMT, Wednesday, 23 November, BT Group plc share price is 365.97p.