German cableco Unitymedia has reported growth of 312,000 ‘new service’ revenue generating units (RGUs) in the three months to 31 December 2007, bringing the total of digital TV, internet and telephony RGUs to 1.28 million. The digital TV user base increased by 196,000 in the quarter to 789,000, accounting for 17% of basic subscribers. Growth was boosted by Unity’s ‘Jetzt Digital’ campaign launched in September 2007, which has led to 169,000 analogue subscribers switching to digital. The cableco shed 82,000 basic cable TV customers to 4.76 million, in line with expectations as a result of recent analogue price increases and the push towards digitalisation.
Internet subscribers grew by more in Q4 2007 than in any other quarter previously, climbing 75,000 to reach 311,000 at 31 December, 149% higher than at the same date in 2006. Broadband take-up has increased significantly in the latter half of 2007 following the launch of the unified Unitymedia brand in June (replacing the existing ish, iesy and Tele Columbus West monikers), and the increasing availability of triple-play services as the operator has upgraded its infrastructure. Telephony RGUs grew by 41,000 in the final three months of 2007, standing at 175,000 at the year-end.
Full year financial results, which are released on 17 April 2008, are expected to show EBITDA for the cable business of around EUR325 million (USD474 million) while CAPEX will be in the region of EUR165 million.