Both Deutsche Telekom in Germany and Dish Network in the US have brought their quarterly results out this week, behind most of their rivals, and in different ways, there seems to be some optimism in both sets of numbers.
Deutsche had German pay TV customers up 271,000 for the year and 65,000 on the quarter to reach 3.09 million; and outside Germany this was up 190,00 over last year and 44,000 on last quarter to rest on 4.2 million, for a total pay TV subscriber count of over 7.1 million. In broadband Deutsche finished 100,000 up on last quarter in Germany to reach 13.1 million, and outside Germany broadband lines were up 49,000 on the quarter to 5.56 million, a rise of 698,000 over this time last year.
Deutsche had mobile numbers up slightly in most territories, but far more in the US, and elsewhere although up, it is fairer to describe them as flat. However, on the financial front, revenues were up just 0.8% globally to €18.25 billion, which was enough for the German operator to raise its forecast for the year, just a fraction, while net income was off dramatically, down to €507 million, less than half of this time last year. The problems were write downs in the value of its shareholding in British Telecom, and the amortization on US spectrum, which between them took €3 billion off the income.
At Dish, had there been no hurricane, pay TV numbers would have been up for the first time in a long time, but that’s really the end of the good news, as it was forced to stop charging 145,000 subscribers in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, because of storm damage. Apart from that it added 16,000 pay TV customers overall, but recorded a one off fall of 129,000, as a result of those in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. It hopes that these will go straight back on the numbers next quarter, but is not counting on it.
Revenues were $3.58 billion in the quarter compared to $3.77 billion for the corresponding period in 2016 and net income attributable to Dish Network was $297 million in Q3 compared to $318 million a year ago.
The company closed Q3 with 13.2 million Pay TV subscribers down from 13.6 million in Q3 2016 and Dish activated 638,000 gross new subscribers, down from 736,000 in the prior year Q3. Churn was down from 1.57% from 2.11%.
However this time ARPU has finally been affected by the slow movement towards Sling TV subscribers, which are far lower than DTH delivered TV, so this fell to $87.23 compared to $89.44 a year earlier.