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Charter’s new strategy shows signs of paying off in Q3

Tue, 11/06/2012 - 3:25pm
Brian Santo

Charter Communications reported third-quarter revenue of $1.88 billion, slightly up from revenue in its Q3 a year ago, and a loss of $87 million, compared with $85 million a year ago.

Residential video customers decreased by 73,000 in the third quarter of 2012, compared with a decline of 63,000 last year. But with increases in video and voice accounts, the company netted an increase of 119,000 residential and commercial relationships. That compared to a net loss of 10,000 customer relationships in the third quarter of 2011.

The company noted that it has been actively marketing only its digital offerings. The majority of the video loss stemmed from limited basic customers, and the loss of expanded basic customers declined by approximately 65 percent year-over-year.

Charter said its new pricing and packaging in the quarter also led to what it called a “significant increase in triple-play sell-in.” Statistically, the company reported triple-play penetration increased from 28.8 percent in Q3 2011 to 29.6 percent in the third quarter just completed.

Third-quarter residential revenue per customer relationship totaled $105.39, down slightly from $105.83 a year ago, reflecting entry-level pricing and continued single-play Internet sell-in despite a higher rate of triple-play sell-in, the company reported.

Commercial revenue grew 20.9 percent on a pro forma and actual basis, driven by growth across all business groups, which the company said marked the sixth consecutive quarter of more than 20 percent growth.

Charter said it had higher capital expenditures to support its growth and operating strategies, and capex spending is likely to remain higher in the near future.

"We entered the quarter in a stronger competitive position from a product, pricing and service standpoint, benefiting customer trends and triple-play sales," said Tom Rutledge, Charter’s president and CEO.

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