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Canal+ making progress as Universal Music helps boost Vivendi

Canal+ is successfully reducing its rate of churn, with new subscribers committing to 24-month contracts and satisfaction levels increasing, according to parent company Vivendi’s chief financial officer Hervé Philippe, speaking to analysts after the media giant announced strong full year results.

Hervé Philippe

In absolute terms, Canal+ Group continued to drag on Vivendi’s results, but the company was able to point to a number of signs of recovery. The pay TV operator’s revenues were flat year-on-year in constant currency terms at €5.246 billion, helped by 5.7% growth in the fourth quarter.

Philippe said that Canal+ €300 million cost-saving plan had been achieved ahead of schedule and that there were still possibilities to make further cost savings. He said everybody in the organsiation was working to “improve the situation”.

The group’s subscriber base globally was up by 586,000 year-on-year, taking its total to 11.9 million, plus an additional 3.1 million from its wholesale partnerships with French telecom operators.

Revenues from the French pay TV operation were down 3.8%, which the company said represented a slowdown quarter-by-quarter in its decline. Revenues from international operations grew by 4.8%, or 5.8% at constant currency, with an increase of 700,000 subscribers in Africa contributing to the growth.

The strong performance of Universal Music helped Vivendi itself achieve strong revenue growth of 15% to €12.444 billion for the full year. Revenues were up 4.9% in constant currency terms. EBITA was up 36.4%, or 23.1% in constant currency terms and adjusted net income was up 73.9% to €1.312 billion.