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Italy's INWIT ups 2023 guidance as contracts track inflation

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MILAN (Reuters) -Italy's top telecoms tower firm INWIT on Thursday confirmed its 2022 guidance while raising next year's targets as contracts with customers adjusted to rising inflation.

INWIT's core earnings rose 12.6 year-on-year in the six months through June to 283 million euros, in line with an analyst consensus provided by the company.

First half revenue also met forecast, rising 9.2% to 418 million euros, as customers including Telecom Italia (TIM) and Vodafone installed an additional 1,080 antennas on INWIT's towers between April and June.

INWIT now expects 2023 revenue of more than 960 million euros and core earnings above 690 million euros, surpassing the top end of previously provided ranges.

Recurring free cash flow is expected to meet the top end of the existing guidance of 560-600 million euros, it said.

INWIT management has so far ruled out major risks in terms of contract renegotiation driven by inflation.

The company confirmed its dividend policy, entailing a 7.5% yearly growth in its payout per share in the 2021-2023 period.

Born as a spin-off of TIM's mobile tower operations, INWIT merged in 2020 with Vodafone's mast business in Italy to create a national champion in charge of 22,000 towers.

Earlier this year TIM agreed to sell a 12.4% indirect stake in INWIT to French investment firm Ardian for 1.3 billion euros, maintaining a residual indirect 3% holding..

(Reporting by Elvira PollinaEditing by Keith Weir and Valentina Za)

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