BT Sport scores strong result in battle with Sky

Oliver Smith
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BT DECLARED its £1bn investment in sports a huge success yesterday, as the company stemmed customer losses for the quarter and enticed the majority of new broadband customers to sign up its new service.

BT Sport has made a confident start and is already delivering for viewers,” said chief executive Gavin Patterson.

The investment in BT Sport appears to be paying off for BT as revenue for the second quarter remained unchanged year-on-year – the first time is has not shrunk in four years.

But Sport hit BT’s profitability for the quarter, with its higher than expected £140m costs, responsible for an eight per cent increase in operating costs.

“It is delivering for the business, helping us achieve a record 93 per cent share of broadband net adds in the quarter, our lowest line losses for five years and per cent revenue growth in our BT Retail Consumer business,” Patterson added.

Revenues during the second quarter ending 30 September were £4.5bn while profits rose two per cent to £609m ahead of expectations – excluding a £52m restructuring charge and £58m interest on pensions.

With BT reporting broadband subscriber growth of 156,000 and Sky boasting 111,000 new broadband customers earlier this month, analysts were left wondering if TalkTalk will report customer losses on 12 November. BT’s share price rose two per cent yesterday while TalkTalk fell 1.8 per cent to 266.8p.