Thursday 17 October 2013 3:00 am

Sky Broadband customer numbers pass five million but profit drops

Sky has announced this morning that it has seen 50 per cent growth in new paid-for subscriptions, with 800,000 in the three months to 30 September. Profit before tax for the period stood at £245m – down from £288 for 2012/13. (Release)

The BSkyB Group has said it has seen nine per cent growth in customer numbers, adding 111,000 for the quarter and bring customer numbers past the five million mark.

Revenue was at £1,843m – up from last year's £1,715m, giving the company seven per cent growth. Jeremy Darroch, chief executive, commented that Sky has made a good start to the financial year. "Adjusted operating profit was in line with our expectations as we invest in new services and absorb higher Premier League costs." Before tax, adjusted profit for the period was £263m, down from £291m for the same quarter last year.

The number of customers who chose triple play – referring to the installing of a single broadband connection for internet, television and phone – was 36 per cent – up three percentage points from last year. Darroch said: "we were particularly pleased with the continued strong performance in home communications… customers now choos[ing] to take all three of TV, broadband and telephony from Sky, [was] over half a million more than last year."

He added that the number of connect Sky+HD boxes grew by almost 50,000 a week in the period. Weekly 'On Demand' downloads grew fourfold and Sky movie rental numbers double what they were last year.

The company saw its best start to the football season to date, with total viewing of Sky Sports up almost 15 per cent on last year, which includes over 40 per cent in viewing via the company's mobile TV service Sky Go.

"We are making excellent progress against the plan we set out in July to accelerate growth and returns from new services… While the consumer environment remains challenging, we are well placed as we execute a strong set of plans for the rest of the year." said Darroch.