Shaw Communications reported $839 million in income in its second fiscal quarter, ended Feb. 28, and growth in all of its subscriber categories.
The company’s net profit was down to $156 million, but Shaw explained that was an artifact of a significantly larger tax benefit last year. The $839 million in service revenue was a 10 percent increase from Shaw’s Q2 ’08.
Basic cable subscribers increased 4,273 to 2.27 million, while the company said it grew digital customers by a company record 106,489 to exceed the million mark at 1.08 million. The company attracted a net addition of 26,130 Internet customers to reach 1.63 million. Digital phone lines were up 50,848 to 719,376. DTH customers increased 3,657 to 896,633.
Subscriber growth, coupled with price increases, fueled the service revenue growth, the company said.
The company spent a little more on equipment this year compared with last year – $19 million in the quarter just completed to $17.9 million in the like quarter a year ago.
CEO Jim Shaw said, “We believe the resilience of our business and the strength of our strategy should continue to produce solid operational and financial results even in the face of these weaker economic conditions.”
He noted that the company launched 100 Mbps service in its first market. The company plans to continue to roll out DOCSIS 3.0 technology and offer that speed tier in other markets. Meanwhile, the company provided free speed upgrades: The 5 Mbps was upped to 7.5 Mbps and the 10 Mbps tier to 15 Mbps.
Shaw has wireless licenses, but it is unlikely to start building a network to make use of its wireless rights for at least another year, according to a report in The Globe and Mail. High-speed data and digital TV will continue to be the services driving company growth.