Netia plans early 2014 cable TV launch

NetiaPolish IPTV service provider Netia said it is gearing up to launch commercial cable TV services from early 2014, after it recently bought network capacity from UPC Polska.

In its first half results, Netia said that it has started connecting the cable network to its backbone network, defining what the yet-to-launch service offering will be and has begun buying necessary network equipment and set-top boxes.

“Together with the newly acquired cable TV networks in Warsaw and Krakow, Netia will soon have 2.9m homes passed by its own local access networks and we are confident that our increasingly competitive TV offerings can underpin a gradual increase in penetration rates for high margin bundled services in the medium term,” said Netia president and CEO Mirosław Godlewski.

Netia signed a deal with UPC Polska in April to buy a part of the former Aster cable operator’s network, taking capacity in Warsaw and Krakow. The PLN5.8 million (€1.4 million) deal was finalised in May following approval by the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection with the acquired network reaching 446,000 households.
Netia said that as of June 30, its existing TV services reached 100,879, up 42% year-on-year and 11% compared to the previous quarter.

During Q2, the firm said it also continued to expand its NGA standard network, which delivers high speed broadband and triple play services including IPTV and streaming TV services. As of June 30, 2013, Netia covered in total 1.172 million households with its NGA network.

“We are committed to developing B2B services, where we generate over two-thirds of our cash flows, defending margins on defocused off-network voice and broadband while growing TV and broadband services delivered over Netia’s own local access networks, which we continue to upgrade to NGA quality,” said Netia CFO Jon Eastick.
Since 2011 Netia has been offering its customers TV services. The offering includes a proprietary set-top box – the ‘Netia Player’, which provides access to paid digital TV services provided over IP based protocols in multicast IPTV and unicast streaming, access to internet services or personal multimedia over the TV screen as well as VOD content libraries such as Ipla, Kinoplex and HBO GO.

Netia’s revenue for the first six months of this year was PLN968.2m, down by 10% compared to the same period in 2012. Net profit was PLN 21.7m for H1 2013 versus net profit of PLN 11.2m for H1 2012.

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