Virgin Media's $23.3bn takeover overshadowed its fourth quarter results, which showed declining prepay sales and changes to mobile termination rates continuing to hit sales.
For the quarter to 31 December, mobile revenue grew by 0.6%, or £900,000. While contract revenues increased by 4,6% to £102.3m, it was offset by a 16% decline in prepay to £34.9m and a £6.5m hit because of changes to mobile termination rates.
It added 38,100 contract customers during the quarter and has increased its contract base by 12% to 1.7m during the past year. Prepay subscribers fell by 32,100 during the quarter, compared to 53,500 during the same quarter in 2011. Its average revenue per user was £15.13, down slightly on the £15.46 during Q4 2011 but up on its third quarter ARPU of £14.72.
Across its full year, mobile revenue was down slightly on 2011 at £554.8m, again because of falling prepay and MTR changes. Contract sales were up 8.9% to £399.8m, while pay as you go sales shank 18% to £140.7m. It said the MTR changes cost it £34.1m.
Neil Berkett [pictured], CEO of Virgin Media, said: '2012 was a year of record cable customer growth, where mainstream demand for superfast broadband and TiVo has led to lower churn and a strong increase in new subscribers. Combined with growth in our business division, we have delivered solid financial progress.'
Across the entire business, operating income was up 30% for the year to £699m, with sales up 2.7% to £4.10bn.
Author: Graeme Neill