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Deutsche Telekom and Tele Columbus post Q3 TV numbers

Tim Höttges, CEO Deutsche Telekom

Two German TV operators – telecom giant Deutsche Telekom and regional cable operator Tele Columbus – reported their third quarter numbers yesterday, with the former seeing TV numbers rise while the latter saw a continued decline in basic TV customers.

Deutsche Telekom’s German domestic TV base increased by 6.9% to 3.787 million at the end of the third quarter, outperforming overall broadband growth – albeit from a smaller base. TV revenues in Germany amounted to €448 million, up 9.8%.

However, the company reported 4.986 million TV customers across the rest of Europe outside Germany, up just 0.8%. Deutsche Telekom did not break out TV numbers for each territory in its latest report. It noted that “with both telecommunications providers and OTT players offering TV services, the TV market is already saturated in many countries of our segment”.

Telekom reported that its small Czech operation recorded “substantial” year-on-year increases in TV numbers

In a call with investors, CFO Christian Illek noted that that German TV net additions of 64,000 in the third quarter were “stable”. Across Europe outside Germany, TV net adds amounted to only 26,000.

Tele Columbus meanwhile saw an ongoing decline in TV subscribers result in the loss of 15,000 TV customers in the quarter, mostly due to basic cable subs leaving.

The operator reported that its premium TV base rose by 2,000 in the third quarter. Tele Columbus also modes broadband and telephony growth, with 7,000 and 4,000 subscribers added respectively.

The group had 2.232 million unique subscribers at the end of September, down 12,000 due to the decline in cable TV subs, which numbered 2.152 million at the end of the period.

Tele Columbus’s overall revenues were up by just 1% for the quarter, with a 4.1% decline in TV revenues to €56.7 million in what the operator described as “a structurally challenging environment” being offset by strong growth in the B2B segment.

Tele Columbus’s EBITDA was down 2.8% to €59.5 million.