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Deutsche Telekom records high customer growth in 2002

Bonn, 28 January 2024  
  • Number of mobile phone customers served by the Group increases by more than 25% to almost 82 million
  • Record growth of T-Mobile USA customers to more than 9.9 million, over one million in the fourth quarter alone
  • T-Mobile USA in leading position among the U.S. mobile communications operators in 2002 in terms of net additions
  • Mobile communications growth in Europe also continues unabated
  • Well over 3.1 million T-DSL lines sold by end of year, almost a million more than in 2001
  • T-Online now with around 12.2 million customers, an increase of 14% for the whole year


In spite of the unfavorable economic climate, the past financial year was marked by strong growth in all of Deutsche Telekom's important product segments. In the USA and Europe, almost all mobile companies within the Group (both majority-owned subsidiaries and affiliates) enjoyed strong customer growth. Thanks to our T-DSL broadband campaign, Deutsche Telekom has been able to further expand its strategic market position.
T-Online was likewise able to further strengthen its position in the European Internet market. 

Number of customers in mobile affiliates increases by more than 25% to almost 82 million 
Despite the high penetration rate already achieved in many markets, the number of customers for all majority-owned subsidiaries and affiliates of Deutsche Telekom and T-Mobile International AG increased sharply by
16.5 million to a total of 81.7 million, signifying growth of more than 25%. In the majority-owned subsidiaries in Germany, the USA, Great Britain, Austria, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Croatia, the number of customers increased by over 8.6 million to around 58.6 million by the end of 2002. The number of customers served by minority holdings increased by more than 7.9 million to 23.1 million.

Within T-Mobile International AG alone, the number of subscribers in the majority-owned subsidiaries rose from 46.7 to 53.9 million. 

A large part of this sharp increase in customer numbers came from T-Mobile USA, which recorded growth of around 41%, with over 2.9 million new customers in net terms, bringing the total to 9.9 million. T-Mobile USA thus achieved a leading position among the U.S. mobile communications operators in 2002. This included a net increase of over one million in the fourth quarter of 2002 alone. Growth in the number of new contract subscribers was even stronger at almost 1.1 million. The customer structure thus improved further in the fourth quarter of 2002. At the end of the year, 86 % of all T-Mobile USA customers were contract subscribers, compared with 74 % at the same time in 2001. 

The number of T-Mobile customers increased considerably in Europe, too. T-Mobile was able to further extend its lead in the German market in 2002. Customer growth for the whole year totaled 1.5 million and over 56% of these were contract subscribers. 783,000 new customers were added in the fourth quarter alone. This meant that the customer base at the end of the year numbered 24.6 million. 

The British company T-Mobile UK gained around two million new customers in the course of the year, totaling over 12.4 million by the end of 2002. The customer acquisition strategy at T-Mobile UK also focused on improving the existing customer structure. With approximately 141,000 new contract subscribers in the fourth quarter, T-Mobile UK once again achieved a large increase compared to the previous quarter.

The number of customers served by T-Mobile CZ in the 2002 financial year increased by more than 0.6 million to 3.5 million; T-Mobile Austria maintained its customer level at over 2.0 million despite a major restructuring of the customer base.

The figures for consolidated companies include the Dutch company Ben with over 1.4 million subscribers at the end of 2002. As part the rebranding of the Group, Ben will be renamed T-Mobile NL in the first quarter of this year. 

High growth rates for T-DSL continue 
The trend towards broadband in the fixed network continues unabated, as reflected in the high levels of demand for T-DSL and T-ISDN. The number of T-DSL lines sold increased by almost one million in the course of the year to well over 3.1 million by the end of 2002 — a rise of almost 41 %. Germany was thereby able to extend its lead in broadband DSL provision among Western industrialized nations. 

In spite of the very high penetration already achieved, demand for T-ISDN continued to grow. The number of channels in use in Germany increased from around 20.4 million to 22.4 million. In a corresponding development, the number of analogue lines in the German fixed network shrunk - primarily a reflection of the substitution effect and a trend that was also apparent in 
T-Com's Eastern European affiliates. 

12.2 million customers for T-Online 
A total of approximately 12.2 million T-Online customers at the end of 2002
- an increase of 1.5 million compared to the previous accounting period - reflected a spell of excellent growth for the company. Of the total number of customers, around 2.2 million are customers of foreign affiliates.

Deutsche Telekom will reveal its preliminary figures for the 2002 financial year as part of a press conference at the CeBIT trade show on 10 March. The range of information presented will largely correspond to that previously made available at Deutsche Telekom's April Press Conference on Financial Statements. For this year's press conference, however, no complete, audited financial statements will be presented. This demonstrates how Deutsche Telekom is continuing to push ahead with its efforts to keep the capital markets and the public up-to-date and fully-informed on the developments of the previous reporting period. More information on important upcoming dates can be found at

  31.12.02 31.12.02 Change
  in millions9 in millions9 in millions9 in %8
Telephone lines
(incl. ISDN channels)
57.53) 56.9 0.6 1.0
Deutsche Telekom (incl. Ö-Tel)Aktiv Plus customers1)T-DSL contracts2)ISDN channels 51.3 1.227.440.99.8
MATÁV 2.9 2.9 0.0 0.0
Slovenské Telekomunikácije 1.5 1.6 (0.1) (6.3)
Hrvatske Telekomunikacije 1.8 1.7 0.1 5.9
Mobile communications subscribers        
T-Mobile Deutschland T-Mobile UK5) T-Mobile USA T-Mobile Austria T-Mobile CZ T-Mobile NL (Ben)3) Majority-owned subsideries
T-Mobile Westel Hrvatske Telekomunikacije Majority-owned subisdiaries Deutsche Telekom Group Mobile communications subscribers in minority-owned affiliates6) Total subscribers7)
24.6 12.4 9.9 2.0 3.5 1.4 53.9 3.4 1.2 58.6 23.1 81.7 23.1 10.4 7.0 2.1 2.9 1.2 46.7 2.5 0.9 50.0 15.2 65.2 1.5 2.0 2.9 (0.1) 0.6 0.2 7.2 0.9 0.3 8.6 7.9 16.5 6.5 19.2 41.4 (4.8) 20.7 16.7 15.4 36.0 33.3 17.2 52.0 25.3
T-Online subscribersof which: T-Onlineof which: Club-Internetof which: Ya.comof which: Others 12.2 10.7 1.5 14.0 13.625.011.10.0

1) Aktiv Plus tariffs used

2) T-DSL contracts marketed

3) Consolidated as of the fourth quarter of 2002, shown here pro forma to facilitate comparison

4) Number of subscribers of the consolidated mobile communications companies

5) Including Virgin Mobile

6) Total number of minority-owned affiliates independent of shareholding.

7) Total number of subscribers of all the consolidated mobile communications companies and total number of
subscribers of other associated mobile communications companies. The 25% stake in PT Satelindo was sold
in the second quarter of 2002. Historical figures have been adjusted accordingly.

8) Percentages calculated in millions and rounded off.

9) Rounded figures calculated on the basis of millions. The total was calculated on the basis of precise figures

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