In its last earnings announcement before its Tele2 merger, Com Hem reported modest TV customer gains and said that high-end set-top box uptake now accounts for 42% of its digital TV base.
Announcing its third quarter results, Com Hem said that digital TV customers (revenue generating units or RGUs) increased by 1,000 to 655,000. The number of customers with a high-end TiVo or TV Hub set-top box grew by 5,000 to 278,000.
Broadband RGUs increased by 8,000 to a record high of 774,000, with close to 90% of Com Hem’s entire broadband base now subscribing to a 100 Mbit/s or higher service, resulting in an average speed across its user base of 158 Mbps.
However, the continued increase in digital TV and broadband RGUs in the quarter was offset by declining fixed-telephony RGUs, which were down 10,000 to 242,000. Com Hem attributed this to “fixed telephony price adjustments during the quarter” as well as the underlying decline in this market.
In terms of financials, revenue declined by 0.2% to SEK 1,777 million (€172 million) driven by a 7.0% decline in revenues at Boxer. However, operating profit was up 7.8% year-on-year to SEK 275 million and EBITDA increased by 0.3% to SEK 749 million.
“We saw improvements in operational KPIs as churn reached a record low in the Com Hem segment and broadband sales picked up in Boxer,” said Com Hem group CEO, Anders Nilsson.
“A milestone was passed in broadband with the commercial launch of 1.2 Gbps speeds, extending our speed leadership. The TV Hub is getting traction with high-end STB penetration now at 42% of the Com Hem segment DTV base. The Boxer synergies are now fully realised following completion of the system integration in Q2.”
“During the quarter, we received approval from our shareholders and in beginning of October the European competition authorities gave clearance to proceed with the merger which is expected to be finalised on November 5. We are very excited to enter the next chapter in the Com Hem story as part of Tele2 and we hope that you will join us for the next leg of the journey.”