Britain's dominant pay-TV operator BSkyB has announced a better-than-expected rise in subscriber numbers and sales for the first three months of the year.
The satellite broadcaster said it added 95,000 new subscribers in its third-quarter, taking its total direct-to-home subscriber base in the UK and Ireland to 7,704,000, and leaving it on course to achieve its long-held target of 8m subscribers by the end of 2005.
Analysts had expected subscriber numbers to rise by between 55,000 and 90,000 in an increasingly competitive market.
Sky said its personal video recorder service Sky+ picked up another 128,000 subscribers in the period, one-third of whom were new to Sky, giving it 770,000 in total. Multi-room customers increased by 90,000 to 563,000.
BSkyB chief executive James Murdoch said: "Continued focus on the implementation of our strategy is returning strong subscriber growth, a good mix of customers, growth in Sky+ and multi-room, and substantial profit and cashflow.
"The whole team at Sky put in a strong performance to deliver these results and we remain focussed and energetic in pursuing our long-term growth plan."
Lovelacemedia | 04.05.2005