UK cable operator Virgin Media signed up a record number of cable subscribers in the third quarter of 2012, driven by demand for its TiVo TV and superfast broadband services.
In the three months ending September 30, Virgin signed up 39,500 cable customers, up from just 6,300 in the same quarter last year, helping both profit and revenue to climb year-on-year.
Within this total, pay-TV subscriber numbers were up 10,700, reversing a comparable decline of 5,700 for the same period a year earlier.
Virgin’s TiVo customer base increased by 205,900 to 1.14 million, or 30% of Virgin Media’s overall 3.78 million TV homes.
Superfast broadband customers, paying for internet speeds of 30Mb and higher, increased by 452,900 and 1.8 million homes – accounting for 42% of Virgin Media broadband customers.
“This has been a quarter where continued strong demand for superfast broadband and TiVo has led to lower churn and meaningful cable customer growth. Combined with progress in our business division, we have again delivered solid financial progress,” said Virgin Media CEO Neil Berkett.
In the quarter, the firm made net profits of £123.9m (US$198.4m), compared with a loss of £73.8m for the same quarter last year. The improvement was mainly due to the benefits of currency fluctuations on US-held debt.
Revenue was up 2.8% year-on-year during the quarter, coming in at £1,028m.
Operating income was up 40% at £180m, which was attributed to improved revenue, and reduced amortisation expenses.