Cable TV

Comcast's Cable Comm segment adds video subs in first quarter

BENGALURU: Comcast Corp (Comcast) reported its results for the first quarter of 2017 (Q1-17, current quarter). In a change from what has now become a norm for the US carriage industry, the US cable and media and entertainment major’s Cable Communications segment ended the current quarter with net quarter-on-quarter (q-o-q) residential and business video subscriber additions of 32,000 and 10,000 respectively – totalling a net growth of 42,000 video subscribers in Q1-17.

Year-on-year (y-o-y) also, Comcast’s Cable Communication Segment added net 98,000 residential and 52,000 video subscribers in the current quarter as compared to the corresponding year ago quarter. The company says that over 50 percent of its 21.52 million residential video customers now have X1. Xfinity's X1 Entertainment Operating System is an interactive platform that combines universal search results from live TV, Comcast's On Demand programming, and DVR recordings, in addition to personalized recommendations, apps, and even Netflix.

Comcast’s consolidated revenue for Q1-17 increased 8.9 percent y-o-y to $20,463 million from $18,790 million. Consolidated net income attributable to Comcast increased 20.2 percent y-o-y to $2,566 million from $2,134 million. Consolidated Adjusted EBITDA increased 10.4 percent y-o-y to $7,032 million from $6,367 million.

Comcast chairman and chief executive officer Brian L. Roberts, said, “2017 is off to the fastest start in five years. We are reporting outstanding growth at Cable and particularly NBCUniversal, which delivered 14.7 percent revenue growth and 24.4 percent Adjusted EBITDA growth. These impressive results were fuelled by exceptionally strong film performance, increased affiliate and retransmission revenues at our TV businesses, and continued growth in Theme Parks. Cable operations had a terrific quarter, driven by strength in high-speed Internet and business services revenue growth, as well as positive video, all highlighted by overall customer relationship net additions of 297,000, a 10 percent increase compared to last year.”

“These results were balanced with financial discipline, which contributed to solid revenue and Adjusted EBITDA growth. The transition from Neil Smit to Dave Watson has gotten off to a very successful and seamless start, and with our teams executing well across all of Comcast NBCUniversal, I am excited about our momentum headed into the rest of 2017 and beyond,” added Roberts

Comcast has two segments – Cable Communications and NBCUniversal.

Cable Communications segment

Cable Communications segment reported 5.8 percent y-o-y growth in revenue in Q1-17 to $12,912 million from $12,204 million. Adjusted EBITDA for Cable Communications increased 6.3 percent y-o-y to $5,198 million in Q1-17 from $4,889 million, reflecting higher revenue, partially offset by a 5.5 percent increase in operating expenses.

High-speed Internet revenue increased 10.1 percent y-o-y in the current quarter to $3,606 million from $3,275 million, driven by an increase in the number of residential high-speed Internet customers and rate adjustments.

Video revenue increased 4.3 percent in Q1-17 to $5,774 million from $5,538 million, reflecting rate adjustments, an increase in the number of customers subscribing to additional services and an increase in the number of residential video customers.

Business services revenue increased 13.6 percent y-o-y to $1,490 million from $1,311 million, primarily due to an increase in the number of small business customers, as well as continued growth in our medium-sized business services.

Advertising revenue decreased 6.3 percent y-o-y to $512 million from $536 million, partially reflecting a decrease in political advertising revenue says the company.

Other revenue increased 4.4 percent y-o-y to $667 million from $638 million, primarily reflecting an increase in security and automation revenue and higher franchise and regulatory fees.

NBCUniversal

Revenue for NBCUniversal increased 14.7 percent y-o-y to $7,868 billion in Q1-17 from $6,861 million. Adjusted EBITDA in the current quarter increased 24.4 percent to $2,017 million from $1,622 million, reflecting increases at Filmed Entertainment, Cable Networks, Broadcast Television and Theme Parks.

Cable Networks revenue increased 7.6 percent y-o-y to $2,641 million in Q1-17 from $2,453 million, reflecting higher distribution and content licensing and other revenue, partially offset by lower advertising revenue. Cable Networks Adjusted EBITDA increased 16.8 percent y-o-y to $1,116 million in Q1-17 from $956 million, reflecting higher revenue, partially offset by a modest increase in programming and production costs.

Broadcast Television revenue increased 5.9 percent y-o-y to $2,208 million in Q1-17 from $2,084 million, reflecting higher distribution and other and content licensing revenue. Distribution and other revenue increased 33.4 percent, due to higher retransmission consent fees. Adjusted EBITDA increased 13.4 percent y-o-y to $322 million in the current quarter from $284 million reflecting higher revenue, partially offset by an increase in programming and production costs.

Filmed Entertainment revenue increased 43.2 percent y-o-y to $1,981 million in Q1-17 from $1,383 million, primarily reflecting higher theatrical revenue, as well as increased other, content licensing, and home entertainment revenue. Theatrical revenue increased by $415 million to $651 million in the current quarter, reflecting the strong performances of Fifty Shades Darker, Get Out and Split , as well as the continued success of Sing in Q1-17. Filmed Entertainment adjusted EBITDA increased by $201 million to $368 million in Q17, reflecting higher revenue, partially offset by higher programming and production costs.

Theme Parks revenue increased 9.0 percent y-o-y to $1,118 million from $1,026 million in Q1-17, reflecting higher attendance and per capita spending, despite an unfavourable comparison from the timing of spring break vacations. Adjusted EBITDA increased 6.1 percent y-o-y to $397 million in the first quarter of 2017, reflecting higher revenue, partially offset by an increase in operating expenses, including pre-opening costs to support new attractions opening in Orlando this spring.

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