Tags: comcast | cord | cutting | subscribers

Comcast Allays Cord-Cutting Fears With Surge in New Subscribers

Image: Comcast Allays Cord-Cutting Fears With Surge in New Subscribers

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Friday, 27 Jan 2017 10:13 AM

Two years ago, Comcast Corp.’s cable business was in decline. The largest operator in the U.S. was losing thousands of TV subscribers as consumers migrated to cheaper online options like Netflix, deciding they could live without big, pricey cable packages.

Those days seem like a distant memory. The Philadelphia-based cable company gained video customers in four of the past five quarters and added to its rolls for the first time in almost a decade.

The turnaround in Comcast’s cable business helped the company post fourth-quarter earnings of 89 cents a share, exceeding the 87-cent average of analysts’ estimates. Comcast signed up 80,000 new cable-TV customers in the period, according to a statement Thursday, which topped the 77,929 average of analysts’ estimates. Executives attribute the momentum in their cable-TV business largely to their new video platform, called X1, which makes it easier to search for shows and movies on TV and on Netflix from their cable set-top box.

The shares rose as much as 4.1 percent in early trading in New York Thursday. The stock has surged 35 percent in the past year. 

Meanwhile, Comcast is still growing by selling high-speed Internet. The company signed up 385,000 new broadband customers in the quarter, topping the average prediction of about 380,000 from three analysts. It signed up 460,000 broadband subscribers in the same quarter a year ago.

Comcast is also pushing into the wireless business. By the middle of this year, the cable provider plans to offer a mobile phone service that lets subscribers makes calls and surf the web using Verizon’s wireless network and Comcast’s millions of Wi-Fi hotspots.

The company also announced that in 2017 it will increase its quarterly dividend by 15 percent, split its shares two-for-one and buy back $5 billion in stock.

 

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Two years ago, Comcast Corp.'s cable business was in decline. The largest operator in the U.S. was losing thousands of TV subscribers as consumers migrated to cheaper online options like Netflix, deciding they could live without big, pricey cable packages.Those days seem...
comcast, cord, cutting, subscribers
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2017-13-27
Friday, 27 Jan 2017 10:13 AM
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