BT revenues down 1pc to stg£4.44bn – BT Sport coming to Republic in August

25 Jul 2013

UK telecoms giant BT reported first-quarter revenues of stg£4.44bn, down 1pc on the previous year. The company reported earnings of stg£1.4bn, also down 1pc. BT Ireland reported a 2pc increase in underlying revenue.

In a quarter that reflected the challenging economic landscape, BT reported that consumer revenue decreased by 1pc not helped by a 5pc decline in calls and line revenues. However, this was offset by 9pc growth in broadband and TV revenue.

BT added 95,000 retail broadband customers, up 12pc and representing 50pc of the DSL and fibre broadband market net additions.

The group added 197,000 retail fibre broadband customers, up 30pc, and the company now has 1.5m customers.

During the quarter, BT launched the slimline BT Hub 4 and 23,000 net TV additions brought its TV customer base to 833,000.

Some 500,000 households have now signed up for BT Sport, most of whom were existing customers who recontracted their broadband service.

BT Business revenue increased by 1pc, the best performance in four years with 9pc growth in IT services. BT Enterprises’ underlying revenue increased by 3pc.

BT Ireland’s revenues increased by 2pc, with growth in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

The company announced a deal with Setanta Sports to add the BT Sport 1, BT Sport 2 and ESPN channels to the Setanta Pack, which means BT Sport will be available in the Republic of Ireland from August.

Fibre at the heart of BT’s plans

“BT continues to make good progress, delivering another quarter of solid growth in underlying profit before tax,” said BT Group CEO Ian Livingston.

“This is despite the impact of regulation and the significant investments we are making for the future.

“It is early days but we are very pleased with the strong start in BT Sport. More than half a million households have now ordered BT Sport and that’s before the channels have even launched.

“Our consumer line loss is at its lowest level in five years and we took a 50pc share of the broadband market net additions. Our SME business grew revenues by 1pc, the best performance in more than four years, and our BT Global Services order intake was up almost 50pc.

“Fibre remains at the heart of our plans and take-up is strong. Our fibre network now passes more than 16m premises with more than 1.7m connected,” Livingston said.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years