Virgin Media beats own subscriber forecasts for Q2
UK cable operator Virgin Media has beaten forecasts by achieving 9,200 net subscriber additions in what is traditionally its weakest quarter.
The gain compares to a loss of 27,800 customers a year ago, Virgin Media said. The company reported a flat churn rate of 1.3%.
This is the first time Virgin Media has achieved a net positive subscriber figure in the second quarter since its merger with NTL-Telewest four years ago, AP said.
The additions surpassed the expectations of the both market and Virgin itself, Reuters added.
The company's revenue grew 7.1% year-on-year to £964.2 million (€1.15 billion), in what Virgin Media said was its strongest revenue growth since the merger.
Operating income surged to £80 million from £9 million the year before.
On the strength of the result, CEO Neil Berkett announced a £700 million capital return program that will involve buying back up to £375 million worth of shares and paying down debt.
He said the strong balance sheet had given the company the required "confidence in our long term ability to deliver strong free cash flow” to embark on such a program.