London — Tough trading in Italy and Spain took the shine off the final set of results delivered by outgoing Vodafone boss Vittorio Colao, with the company reporting a slowdown in first-quarter organic service revenue growth on Wednesday. The world’s second-biggest mobile operator and Vodacom parent had warned that growth would slow at the start of the new financial year, but it reiterated its full-year cash and earnings targets. For the quarter to the end of June, organic service revenue grew by 0.3% under the International Accounting Standard (IAS) 18 accounting basis, a sharp slowdown from the previous year but slightly ahead of consensus forecasts at 0.2%. The results reflected some of the challenges that Colao, an Italian, has encountered in his 10 years in charge — competition in Italy and Spain and an intense price war in India. Vodafone has merged its Indian unit with Idea Cellular to enable it to better compete. The Italian market has been shaken up by the entry of French op...

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