Sky TV profit up as viewers upgrade

Last updated 10:42 22/02/2013

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Sky Network Television has posted a 9 per cent increase in net profit for the half year to $68.2 million on the back of more subscribers upgrading to MySky and premium channels.

The NZX-listed pay-television company reported a 3.9 per cent increase in revenue and $67.4m in after-tax earnings for the six months to the end of December, a 7.4 per cent increase on the previous period.

Revenues were also up 3.9 per cent to $443.3m and earnings before interest, tax and depreciation (EBITDA) increased by 4.2 per cent to $177.2m.

Chief executive John Fellet said the growth was due to the continued success of the MySky HDi decoders and a 5.5 per cent increase in average revenue per subscriber (ARPU) from $71.81 to $75.78.

The increase in ARPU is mainly the result of Sky customers upgrading to new services such as MySky or premium channels such as SoHo, Fellet said.

The company said MySky subscribers now represented 51.2 per cent of its satellite subscriber base, compared to 40.1 per cent in the previous corresponding half.

At 31 December 2012, Sky had 423,973 MySky subscribers compared to 331,041 in December 2011, an increase of 28.1 per cent.

Advertising revenue was down 9.5 per cent over the half reflecting the impact of the Rugby World Cup in the prior comparable period.

Fellet said Sky's directors had decided pay an increased fully-imputed dividend

of 12 cents per share, compared to a prior interim dividend of 11 cents, with a record date of March 8.

A supplementary dividend of 2.1 cents per share will also be paid to nonresident shareholders.

The dividend will be paid on March 15.

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