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Highlights

For further information on these and other events, please refer to our media information.

Shareholder remuneration

Deutsche Telekom AG’s shareholder remuneration. On the basis of the results for the 2023 financial year and the dividend policy communicated at the 2021 Capital Markets Day, the Board of Management of Deutsche Telekom AG will propose to the shareholders’ meeting a dividend of EUR 0.77 per dividend-bearing share for the 2023 financial year. In November 2023, we additionally announced plans to buy back Deutsche Telekom AG shares up to a total purchase price of EUR 2 billion in the 2024 financial year as part of a share buy-back program. The buy-back commenced on January 3, 2024 and will be carried out in several tranches through December 31, 2024. The purpose of the share buy-back is to recoup part of the dilution effect from Deutsche Telekom AG’s 2021 capital increase.

For further information, please refer to our media report.

End of T‑Mobile US share buy-back program from September 2022. T‑Mobile US repurchased a total of around 98.8 million shares under the 2022 share buy-back program at a price of USD 14.0 billion (EUR 13.2 billion). The budget was therefore fully exhausted by the end of September 2023.

T‑Mobile US shareholder return program from September 2023. On September 6, 2023, T‑Mobile US announced a shareholder return program of up to USD 19 billion that will run from October 1, 2023 through December 31, 2024. The program consists of further share buy-backs totaling around USD 15.25 billion, as well as dividends totaling around USD 3.75 billion to be paid out on a quarterly basis. The amount available for share buy-backs will be reduced by the amount of any dividends approved. On September 25, 2023, the T‑Mobile US Board of Directors declared an initial cash dividend of USD 0.65 per share, which was paid out on December 15, 2023. In the 2023 financial year, T‑Mobile US bought back around 15.5 million shares with a total volume of USD 2.2 billion (EUR 2.0 billion) under its share buy-back program.

For further information, please refer to our media report.

Transactions

Sale of GD Towers. On July 13, 2022, Deutsche Telekom agreed to sell a 51.0 % stake in the cell tower business companies in Germany and Austria (GD Towers), which were assigned to the Group Development operating segment, to DigitalBridge and Brookfield. After all necessary regulatory approvals had been duly granted and all other closing conditions met, the transaction was closed on February 1, 2023. Deutsche Telekom retains a 49.0 % stake, benefiting from future value upside at GD Towers. We have largely leased back the sold passive network infrastructure in Germany and Austria, enabling Telekom Deutschland and T‑Mobile Austria to maintain their mobile network leadership.

Transfer of T‑Mobile US shares to SoftBank. On December 28, 2023, in accordance with the supplementary agreement from February 20, 2020 (Letter Agreement) closed between T‑Mobile US, SoftBank, and Deutsche Telekom in the course of the Sprint Merger, T‑Mobile US issued 48,751,557 shares of common stock in T‑Mobile US to SoftBank. The condition of the Letter Agreement that the volume-weighted price of T‑Mobile US ordinary shares reach or exceed USD 149.35 (after adjusting for the first cash dividend by T‑Mobile US) for 45 days was satisfied on December 22, 2023. The issue of the shares to SoftBank reduced Deutsche Telekom’s ownership stake in T‑Mobile US to 50.6 % as of December 31, 2023.

Majority stake in T‑Mobile US. In the 2023 financial year, Deutsche Telekom achieved its declared capital market objective from 2021 of securing the majority in T‑Mobile US. Taking the treasury shares held by T‑Mobile US into account, Deutsche Telekom’s ownership stake in T‑Mobile US stood at 50.6 % as of December 31, 2023. In early 2024, Deutsche Telekom began selling a portion of its T‑Mobile US share portfolio on the market, without jeopardizing its own majority ownership position in T‑Mobile US.

Sale of the U.S. Wireline Business. On September 6, 2022, T‑Mobile US reached an agreement with Cogent on the sale of T‑Mobile US’ fiber-optic-based Wireline Business, under which Cogent will take over all shares in the entity. The transaction was consummated on May 1, 2023.

Agreement on the acquisition of Ka’ena in the United States. On March 9, 2023, T‑Mobile US entered into a Merger and Unit Purchase Agreement for the acquisition of 100 % of the outstanding equity of Ka’ena Corporation and its subsidiaries including, among others, Mint Mobile, for a maximum purchase price of USD 1.35 billion to be paid out 39 % in cash and 61 % in shares of T‑Mobile US common stock. The transaction is subject to approval by the authorities as well as other customary closing conditions and is expected to close around the end of the first quarter of 2024.

For further information on these corporate transactions and others, please refer to the section “Group organization” in the combined management report and the sections “Other transactions that had no effect on the composition of the Group” and “Changes in the composition of the Group and other transactions” in the consolidated financial statements.

Rating

On May 19, 2023, the rating agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P) raised its long-term rating for Deutsche Telekom AG from BBB to BBB+ with a stable outlook. S&P also raised the rating for T‑Mobile US in May 2023 from its previous level of BBB- to BBB with a stable outlook. Both Moody’s and Fitch had already upgraded their ratings for T‑Mobile US in April 2023, the former from Baa3 to Baa2 with a stable outlook, and the latter from BBB- to BBB+ with a stable outlook.

Network build-out

Germany. We continued to build out our network infrastructure in Germany throughout the reporting year. At the end of 2023, our 5G network covered 95.9 % of the population, with over 80,000 antennas transmitting 5G across Germany. Around 10,000 of these antennas use the fast 5G spectrum in the 3.6 GHz band. Our rigorous focus on 5G will continue in 2024. In the year ahead, 5G standalone will also be made available for use by consumers. Our business customers already use this technology with functions like network slicing, e.g., for live TV broadcasts of media, or in 5G campus networks for industry and research.

In the fixed network build-out, optical fiber continued to take center stage. By the end of 2023, we had made more than 2.5 million more fiber-optic lines available in Germany. In other words, we achieved our build-out target for the year, bringing the total number of households and businesses with the option to subscribe to a fiber-optic line to around 8 million.

In the reporting year, Deutsche Telekom established its own civil engineering company to ensure further acceleration of the network build-out. This move serves to address the pressing need for civil engineering capacities on the German market. The civil engineering company Deutsche Telekom Tiefbau GmbH is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Telekom Deutschland and will focus on connecting homes.

In addition to its own build-out efforts, Deutsche Telekom also relies on partnerships as an important mainstay of the build-out. We have a total of around 40 partnerships in place on the joint construction, operation, or use of fiber-optic infrastructure. Alongside collaborating with regional partners (among other places in several districts in the Stuttgart region, in Upper Franconia and the Upper Palatinate, in Bavarian Swabia, and in North Hesse), we have also agreed framework conditions with organizations including the central association of the German housing industry for our fiber-optic build-out to properties managed by this sector. Furthermore, June 2023 marked the start of the implementation phase of the Saxon State Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs’ broadband access initiative to connect schools across Saxony to our fiber-optic network.

For further information on our network roundup for 2023, please refer to our media report (German only) and our media special on the 2023 Network Day.

United States. As of the end of 2023, T‑Mobile US’ 5G network covered around 98 % of the U.S. population, with 300 million people benefiting from Ultra Capacity 5G (5G UC). T‑Mobile US has thus hit its 2023 year-end target for 5G UC coverage.

On September 12, 2023, T‑Mobile US agreed with U.S. cable network operator Comcast to acquire spectrum in the 600 MHz band in exchange for total cash consideration of between USD 1.2 billion and USD 3.3 billion. The transaction is expected to be closed in the first half of 2028.

Europe. In the countries of our Europe segment, too, we substantially intensified the network build-out in the reporting year. As of the end of 2023, our national companies covered on average 67.2 % of the population in our European footprint with 5G, representing a significant increase year-on-year.

We also made particularly good progress with the build-out of our fixed network in our European national companies in 2023. At the end of the reporting year, a total of around 9.1 million households, which means around 1 million additional households compared with the prior year, had access to our fiber-optic network offering gigabit speeds.

We continue to systematically execute on our strategy regarding the shared use of networks, and to this end, our national companies in Europe also agreed and finalized further cooperations on the fiber-optic build-out in the reporting year. Alpen Glasfaser, a cooperation between Magenta Telekom and Meridiam, started operations in Austria in March 2023. In Poland, T‑Mobile Polska entered into an agreement with Vectra Group on access to Vectra’s fiber-optic network, and announced it is establishing a cooperation with Polish Open Fiber that will give us access to their fiber-optic network.

Corporate responsibility

Good, Green, Magenta. For more than 20 years, Deutsche Telekom has been taking responsibility for the environment, society, and people. 2023 was another busy year: for example, the Science Based Targets initiative confirmed our interim goal on our journey towards climate neutrality, we established a governance structure to embed the CR strategy in the segments, and we were once again very active tackling online hate speech.

For further information on our corporate responsibility activities and our HR work, please refer to the sections “Combined non-financial statement” and “Employees” in the combined management report.

Innovation

First O-RAN antennas go live. The first network of Open Radio Access Network (O-RAN or Open RAN) antennas started transmitting in our commercial network in December 2023, providing coverage to people in New Brandenburg. Nokia and Fujitsu supply the necessary technology components. Open RAN is an open antenna access network. One big change is that components from various different technology suppliers are now interoperable. We are planning for more than 3,000 O-RAN-compatible antenna sites by the end of 2026.

For further information on our innovations, please refer to the section “Technology and innovation” in the combined management report.

World exhibition of digitalization: Digital X 2023. From September 20 to 21, 2023, Europe’s leading digitalization initiative provided a glimpse of how we might live and work in the future with showcases of trends and technical innovations covering topics from 5G, automation and process optimization, cloud computing and IoT, data rooms and blockchain, to artificial intelligence and the metaverse. Around 50 thousand visitors experienced the innovations of tomorrow live and up close as part of this year’s theme “Be digital. Stay human.”

For further information, please refer to our media report.

Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2023. “Giving technology a heartbeat” was our motto at MWC Barcelona from February 27 to March 2, 2023, where we showcased technology and innovations for people, the environment, and businesses. The spotlight was on resilient and sustainable networks, e.g., for seamless connectivity across space via 5G and IoT, the commercial deployment of Open RAN, and for easy access to application programming interfaces via a cross-country and cross-network platform.

For further information, please refer to our media report.

Cooperations, partnerships, and major deals

Joint network build-out along rail routes and freeways. In the two years since the start of the mobile network build-out cooperation with Deutsche Bahn, LTE coverage with speeds of 200 Mbit/s along Deutsche Bahn’s major routes has risen to around 97 % as of the end of 2023. Germany’s freeways, too, are benefiting from nationwide simpler and faster mobile communications network build-out following an agreement reached with Autobahn GmbH in May 2023. Plans include the construction of around 400 new cell sites to increase network densification in the coming years. The first jointly realized cell tower is now in operation at the Schellenbach freeway services, closing a 5G coverage gap on the A1.

5G campus networks for business customers. Europe’s leading shipping line-independent container terminal operator EUROGATE has commissioned us to implement three 5G campus networks. The “Campus network L” 5G B2B solution will improve mobile coverage at the container terminals for the ports in Hamburg, Bremerhaven, and Wilhelmshaven. We also equipped Helmut Schmidt University in Hamburg with a private 5G campus network. The campus network delivers mobile communications via 5G standalone to power the projects of the Digitalization and Technology Research Center of the Bundeswehr/German Federal Armed Forces. Partners from science and the industrial sector will use the innovative 5G testing ground to trial digital applications.

Sports partnerships. Following our successful partnership with the Special Olympics World Games in Berlin in summer 2023, we are supporting the Special Olympics organization for Germany, Special Olympics Deutschland, as a partner until the end of 2026. The goal is to promote an inclusive society. In 2023, we extended our partnership with Bundesliga basketball team Baskets Bonn until summer 2026. We are also an official partner of UEFA EURO 2024 for telecommunication services and media rights. On August 24, 2023, we presented details of this three-pillar partnership and announced extensive cooperation with RTL on the production and broadcasting of the matches.

Blockchain cooperations (Web3). Deutsche Telekom MMS joined the Energy Web Foundation and the MultiversX network in the reporting year to support secure Web3 infrastructures and applications. Energy Web is an ecosystem of energy majors and IT service providers utilizing blockchain technology to accelerate the energy transition. Solutions available on the platform are designed to unlock a more decentralized, digitalized, and decarbonized energy system. MultiversX has created a highly scalable, efficient, and secure blockchain architecture capable of supporting Web3 and metaverse applications, for example. Deutsche Telekom MMS acts as a validator, and verifies transactions, creates blocks, and protects the network from attacks.

Business automation based on European standards. T‑Systems and UiPath have entered into a partnership to deliver hyperautomation in the Open Telekom Cloud with an initial focus on the public, healthcare, and public transport sectors in the DACH region. UiPath’s AI-powered platform portfolio with applications such as Machine Learning, Process Mining, and Document Understanding empowers businesses to automate and digitalize entire processes from end to end. Data will be hosted in European data centers and accessed exclusively from Europe for maintenance and analytics.

For further information, please refer to our media report.

Major deals for Deutsche Telekom. At the end of 2023 we secured a deal with Bayer, the chemical and pharmaceuticals multinational, to provide around 20 thousand SIM cards, which will enable all Bayer employees in Germany to use our mobile network in the future. We will additionally install 4G/5G at eleven of Bayer’s locations to ensure full network coverage in all internal and external areas. We also acquired further customers in the field of digital identities in 2023. T‑Systems supplies the ID wallet for Gaia-X Federation Services for the customer eco – Association of the Internet Industry. These services are the basis and toolbox for setting up and operating a cloud ecosystem managed by the participants themselves. T‑Systems and Verimi are also developing a proof-of-concept ID wallet for tax consultants on behalf of DATEV. In the reporting year, the European Space Agency (ESA), too, chose T‑Systems as a service provider for the Copernicus Data Space Ecosystem, one of the world’s largest public platforms for Earth observation data. The data can be used to conduct trend analyses for science, economy, and politics. Registered users have been able to access the new Copernicus Data Space Ecosystem since January 2023. New Data Space services were launched in September 2023.

Products, rate plans, and services

Fairphone 5: A sustainable smartphone. The Fairphone 5 has been available from us since September 14, 2023. Its improved longevity aims to set new standards for environmentally friendly technology. At the heart of the Fairphone 5 is an eight-core processor, which receives software updates for at least eight years to ensure long-lasting performance. A five-year warranty can be activated after purchase.

For further information, please refer to our media report.

Launch of the T Tablet. The launch of the T Tablet on August 24, 2023 marks another milestone in our commitment to provide Europe-wide 5G access. The tablet is a result of our ongoing partnership with software vendor Google, and seamlessly combines hardware, software, and network functionality.

For further information, please refer to our media report.

New rate plans for Germany. In October 2023, we launched our fixed-network and mobile product bundle for business customers, Company Start Hybrid. With speeds of up to 100 Mbit/s over the fixed network and 300 Mbit/s over the mobile network, the plan offers a reliably fast and stable internet connection. On September 5, 2023, we launched an online-only mobile rate plan for young people under 28 years of age available exclusively through the new GÖNN app. GÖNN includes 10 GB of data volume in our 5G network, unlimited voice calls and text messages in all German networks, as well as three days of unlimited surfing every month and exclusive deals for customers. Since September 5, 2023, we have also offered the MagentaZuhause Flex rate plans with no minimum contract term. The Flex option is available for the MagentaZuhause M, L, and XL rate plans and can also be combined with MagentaTV.

T‑Mobile US’ new Un-carrier rate plans. In August 2023, T‑Mobile US launched its new Go5G Next and Go5G Business Next rate plans offering access to the T‑Mobile US 5G network plus an optional device upgrade every year for all customers. T‑Mobile US had already made another Un-carrier move, Phone Freedom, in April 2023 with the Go5G Plus rate plan, which guarantees that both new and existing customers get the same device deals and are upgrade-ready every two years. Customers can also exchange their devices still locked into device contracts for a new one with The Easy Unlock option, and those who switch benefit from a Go Back Guarantee.

New B2B campus network solution. Our “Campus Network M with Industrial Frequencies” is a dual-slice campus network offering created specifically for the manufacturing industries. Based on the public 3.6 GHz frequency range in our 5G network, companies are able to additionally operate the solution as a virtual private network and benefit from the exclusivity of the local 5G spectrum in the 3.7 to 3.8 GHz range made available by the Bundesnetzagentur without the need to install their own 5G core network infrastructure. Critical applications thus run separately from the public 5G network – at high bandwidths and without being influenced by public data traffic.

For further information, please refer to our media report.

Awards

In the reporting year, we won numerous accolades for our networks and our service, as well as our HR, CR, and IR work, and more besides. The illustration below shows a selection of the awards received.