Altice Europe has turned in what founder Patrick Drahi was able to describe as “a solid performance…against this challenging backdrop” in the quarter to March.
EBITDA was up by 1% to €1.3 billion.
Revenue was up in all markets except the Dominican Republic. However Altice TV saw its revenues dip from €62.8 million to €59.7 million. The group’s NextRadioTV unit this week unveiled plans to shut down its sports news channel and downsize its pay TV operation.
In France, the group’s residential fixed base grew by 8,000 customers, with 64,000 new fibre customers and 46% of the total fixed subscriber base on fibre. The residential mobile postpaid base grew by 79,000 customers.
Despite the coronavirius, Altice France grew its revenues by 3.6%, compared with 1.6% a year earlier.
In Portugal, the residential fixed base grew by 5,000 customers. Fibre customer net additions were 34,000 and mobile postpaid net additions numbered 35,000.
The results enabled Altice Europe to maintain its 2020 guidance, despite the ongoing crisis. It said that the main negative impacts include delays in FTTH construction during lockdown which the group expects to catch-up; a fall in the sale of equipment while shops are closed, which is expected to come back at the end of Q2; lower roaming revenue and a severe downturn in advertising revenue.
The guidance assumes lockdowns are lifted during Q2 and there is a gradual economic recovery thereafter.
“The group delivered a solid performance in the first quarter, against this challenging backdrop. In both Altice France and Altice International we achieved an acceleration in residential service revenue growth supported by strong subscriber net gains in all geographies and all segments. We continue to carefully assess the potential impacts of the pandemic but currently see no need to change our 2020 guidance. The group continues to significantly invest in and expand its proprietary best-in-class infrastructure, commensurate with Altice Europe’s leading position in each market,” said Drahi.