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Swisscom sees TV base grow at slower rate

Swisscom signSwisscom’s TV subscriber base grew by 10.9% last year to take the Swiss telco’s total TV base to 1.48 million, a year-on-year increase of 145,000 homes.

According to the telco, the numbers give it a market share of 32%, up from 29% at the end of 2015, despite stiff competition from cable. By comparison, Liberty Global’s UPC Cablecom had a 27% market share, made up of 579,000 basic customers and 656,000 premium customers.

The number of Swisscom TV additions was down slightly on the previous year’s total of 166,000 net adds, which the company said was due to saturation of the market. Q4 net adds for TV numbered 36,000, down slightly on the Q3 figure of 40,000.

TV and broadband adds have failed to wholly compensate for lost fixed voice, although the telco slowed the rate of voice decline in 2016.

Swisscom’s ‘TV Light’ basic offering had 301,000 customers at the end of the year, while its pay TV offering had 1.175 million customers.

Swisscom said that practically all new fixed-line customers were taking TV as part of a bundled offering. By the end of 2016, the number of customers using bundled packages had increased year-on-year by 256,000 or 18.1% to 1.67 million. Revenue from bundled contracts increased by CHF268 million (€252 million) or 12.0% to CHF2.5 billion.

Overall, 94% of TV customers took the service as part of a bundle, compared with 85% of broadband customers.

Swisscom said that it planned to transition all its services – including telephony, TV and data to IP by the end of this year.

Overall, Swisscom posted revenues of CHF11.64 billion, flat year-on-year, although revenue from its core Swiss business dropped by 1.1% to CHF9.44 billion.

EBITDA grew by 4.8% to CHF4.29 billion. However adjusted EBITDA fell by 1.2%.

“We have lived up to our promise and achieved the forecast for 2016. It was certainly hard going and the pressure on prices and the reduction in roaming fees presented us with a real challenge. But we worked on cutting our costs and performed well on the market. I am especially pleased with innovations such as the G.fast data transmission standard, the further development of our TV offering and the progress we have made in the corporate business. I was also impressed by the market performance of Fastweb in Italy. In future we will do our utmost to ensure Swisscom’s entrepreneurial freedom and ability to invest and innovate in an extremely competitive market,” said CEO Urs Schaeppi.

Tags: Swisscom, TV