UPDATE 3-Telefonica upbeat on sales after Venezuela hits results

miércoles 25 de febrero de 2015 09:17 GYT

* Sees 2015 revenue up more than 7 percent

* 2014 net profit 3 bln euros vs 3.18 bln in Reuters poll

* To pay 0.75 euro per share dividend in 2015, 2016

* Devaluation of Venezuelan bolivar hurts profits (Adds investor comment, detail, updates shares)

By Sonya Dowsett and Andrés González

MADRID, Feb 25 (Reuters) - Spain's Telefonica gave upbeat sales growth forecasts on Wednesday after the devaluation of the bolivar hit its Venezuelan business badly last year and helped knock more than a third off net profit.

Europe's third biggest telecoms company by market value and revenue said it expected sales to grow more than 7 percent this year and more than 5 percent in 2016.

The company said it would pay a 0.75 euro dividend in each of the next two years and cancel share capital, helping maintain one of the highest dividend yields in the sector at 5.4 percent, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Europe's major telecom companies have begun to turn a corner after years of intense regulatory pressure, recession and competition that all hit the top line.   Continuación...