Mobile giant Vodafone saw its shares fall by almost 11 per cent yesterday, after it warned that its struggling Japanese unit would curb growth in 2007. The fall wiped £9bn off the value of the company.
The announcement has led some analysts to suggest that Vodafone should sell its Japanese business.
Mark Blowers, senior research analyst at Butler Group, said: " It looks like a bit of an over-reaction to me. Vodafone is very cash rich and there is every chance that 3G will start to deliver good revenue in 2007, so this drop in value is surprising.
"Yes its core markets are saturated, but revenue per user could rise again once there are new services to attract users. To my mind Vodafone is being hammered for being honest."
Vodafone chief executive Arun Sarin blamed the problems on the cost of promotions and investments to try and win and retain customers in Japan, one of the world's most advanced mobile phone markets.
Key customer revenue, or monthly average revenue per user, fell to £16.40 in Germany, £26 in the UK and £29.80 in the US.
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