British Sky Broadcasting Group 1st Quarter Results
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MIDDLESEX, UNITED KINGDOM, Nov 01 (Marketwire) -- BRITISH SKY BROADCASTING GROUP PLC Unaudited results for the three months ended 30 September 2012 Adjusted results Three months to 30 Sept 2013 2012 Variance Revenue GBP1,715m GBP1,657m +4% EBITDA GBP392m GBP381m +3% Operating profit GBP310m GBP295m +5% Earnings per share (basic) 13.4p 11.6p +16% Robust quarterly performance with broad product growth and strong loyalty * Good growth in products and customers, up 533,000 and 48,000 respectively * One in three customers now takes all three of TV, broadband and talk * Strong customer loyalty with Q1 churn of 10.9% Extending leadership in content * Long-term renewals in sports and movies providing certainty on content leadership * Spectacular success of Ryder Cup - 4.8m viewers and 700,000 unique Sky Go users Bringing world-class innovation to customers * Launch of catch up service offers the best of pay and free TV on demand * Award-winning Sky+HD box re-launched with six times more storage * Unique users of Sky Go up 75%, confirming leadership in over-the-top content delivery Top-line growth and operational efficiency driving strong financial performance * Revenue up 4% * Adjusted operating profit up 5% * Adjusted basic earnings per share up 16% * Approval sought at 2012 AGM for further GBP500m share buy-back programme in 2012/13 Jeremy Darroch, Chief Executive, commented: "We have made a strong start to the year, delivering another good quarterly performance and continuing to position the business for the long term. Our investment in high quality content and innovative services has delivered excellent levels of loyalty and generated good growth in customers and products. At the same time, we continue to drive improvements in efficiency, reliability and customer service throughout our operations. This approach continues to generate strong financial results with good growth in revenues and earnings. Looking forward, whilst we continue to see a challenging consumer environment in the UK and Ireland, we are well positioned to execute our plans for the year. Results highlights Customer Metrics (unaudited) As at As at Annual Quarterly Growth 30-Sep-12 30-Sep-11 Growth to 30-Sep-12 Total products ('000s) 28,898 26,058 +2,840 +533 TV 10,308 10,213 +95 +20 HD 4,468 3,925 +543 +125 Multiroom 2,423 2,295 +128 +21 Broadband 4,103 3,485 +618 +102 Telephony 3,888 3,248 +640 +120 Line rental 3,708 2,892 +816 +145 Total customers ('000s) 10,654 10,371 +283 +48 Products per customer 2.7 2.5 +0.2 Other metrics Customers taking each of TV, broadband & talk 33% 28% +5% ARPU (2) GBP550 GBP535 +GBP15 Churn (2) 10.9% 11.1% An additional KPI summary table containing further detailed disclosure may be found in Schedule 1. Business Performance (1)(unaudited) GBP'millions 3 months to 3 months to 30-Sep-12 30-Sep-11 Movement Revenue 1,715 1,657 +4% Adjusted EBITDA 392 381 +3% Adjusted operating profit 310 295 +5% % Adjusted operating profit margin 18.1% 17.8% +30 bps Adjusted basic earnings per 13.4p 11.6p +16% share (3) 1 A reconciliation of adjusted operating profit and adjusted EBITDA to reported measures is set out in Appendix 2. 2 Quarterly annualised. 3 Adjusted basic EPS is calculated from adjusted profit for the period. A reconciliation of reported profit to adjusted profit is set out in note 3 to the consolidated financial information. SUMMARY OF OPERATIONAL AND FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE In the three months to 30 September 2012 ("the quarter") we have continued to focus on improving the customer experience: delivering great TV, providing leading innovation and improving service delivery. This approach has driven strong customer loyalty and good product and customer growth. Churn improved year on year to 10.9% and we added 533,000 net products in the quarter, growing the total number of products year on year by 11% to reach 28.9 million. We also added 48,000 new Sky households to reach 10.654 million, with 28,000 new standalone home communications customers and 20,000 new TV customers. As customers choose to take more products from us, ARPU has grown to a new high of GBP550. Our home communications proposition performed strongly, with combined quarterly net growth of 367,000, comprising 102,000 broadband, 120,000 telephony and 145,000 new line rental customers. Our triple-play base has grown by 19% year on year, with 3.5 million or one in three customers, now taking each of TV, broadband and talk. Total HD customers reached 4.5 million, with 125,000 net additions in the quarter. This reflected continued strong demand for the product alongside the success of our 'Summer of Sport in HD' campaign. The strength of our offering, including our dedicated Formula 1 channel which launched in April, has driven increased demand for our premium channels and their HD versions across other platforms. Our multiroom base also grew by 21,000 to 2.4 million. Our financial performance for the quarter was strong, with year on year increases in revenue, adjusted profits, adjusted margins and adjusted earnings. Revenue growth of 4% combined with an absolute reduction in adjusted other operating costs to deliver adjusted operating profit of GBP310 million, up 5%, and an adjusted operating margin expansion to 18.1%. Adjusted basic earnings per share grew by 16% to 13.4 pence. Extending leadership on screen With the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games falling in the quarter, we focused attention on providing a differentiated offering for our customers. In addition to the main terrestrial channels, Sky customers had access to the most comprehensive BBC coverage of the Olympics in HD via 24 dedicated channels plus 100 hours of 3D coverage from Eurosport on Sky 3D. In total, over 14 million people watched the dedicated channels in Sky homes generating a viewing share of 7% during the games. It was a strong September for Sky Sports. We achieved record audiences for tennis, with Andy Murray's US Open Tennis victory attracting 4.5 million viewers. We also had a spectacular response to our coverage of the Ryder Cup, reaching 4.8 million viewers across Sky Sports 1 and 700,000 unique users on Sky Go. We reinforced our position as the home of live cricket by securing six more England overseas tours, including next year's Ashes. Long-term agreements with three international cricket boards will bring a range of live Test cricket from Australia, South Africa and India until at least 2016. Alongside this, we agreed a new four-year deal with the ERC for exclusive live coverage of European Rugby competitions - the Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup - until 2018. These new deals complete sixteen recent long-term renewals for Sky Sports within the last 18 months, meaning we now have a stronger line up of live sport for our viewers than ever before. We also delivered a strong schedule from September on our entertainment channels. Sky Atlantic launched nine new commissions in the quarter, including 'Alan Partridge Open Books', 'British Cycling: Road to Glory' and 'The British', while Sky1 saw successful launches of 'Sinbad' and 'A Touch of Cloth'. Over 30% of subscribers now say Sky Atlantic is a "must have" channel for them, while 50% say the same for Sky1, making it the most popular pay TV channel. In movies, we further strengthened our offering with a comprehensive new agreement with Warner Bros. This agreement spans the pay-per-view and first subscription pay TV windows, and means that subscribers to Sky Movies, including customers of NOW TV, will enjoy exclusive access to Warner Bros. new releases as little as six months after they have ended their run in cinemas. Innovating to add value for customers We continue to lead the market in product innovation, driving strong usage of existing products and adding value to customers by bringing new ways to consume Sky's content. Our world-class over-the-top service for Sky customers, Sky Go, goes from strength to strength. Usage of the service is building as customers access more of the content they love wherever and whenever they want. Unique users of the service increased in the quarter to reach a new high of 2.8 million, up 75% on the prior year, with particularly strong usage around the Ryder Cup as customers kept up with the dramatic European victory. We re-launched our award-winning Sky+ service during the quarter, step-changing Britain's most popular personal video recorder. The first-time inclusion of a new 7-day Catch Up TV section within our On Demand service (previously Anytime+) means that programmes from both Sky and terrestrial channels are now seamlessly integrated into the Sky+ experience. At the same time, we introduced a new Sky+HD 2TB box providing capacity to store up to 350 hours of HD content and giving customers more personal storage than any other subscription TV provider. We also continue to innovate around Sky+ to enhance the customer experience away from the main TV screen with the launch of a new app for iPad which allows customers to connect to online communities around virtually every show on television, across Sky and other channels. All of these new features mark the latest stage in the on-going development of Sky+, which is now enjoyed in over nine million homes - more than all of the other competing pay TV services added together. We continue to offer customers greater flexibility in the ways in which they can access our content with a growing proportion of households now having fully-connected set-top boxes. Around 1.3 million households have activated our full on-demand service by connecting their Sky+HD box to the internet and on average are downloading more than three pieces of on-demand content per week. Customers can now rent a movie instantly via Sky Store, with a choice of over 1,000 titles available on-demand from 99p. Despite the closure of half the Sky Box Office (SBO) channels in the quarter to allow for our extended coverage of the Olympics, transactions via our pay-per-view services were up 3% year on year (excluding the impact of a one-off boxing fight in the prior year). We launched our second pay TV brand, NOW TV, in the quarter offering a new way to access Sky Movies. We will continue to build awareness of the service as we focus on movies in the run up to Christmas and we are planning to introduce content from Sky Sports by the end of the year. Improving service delivery Market-leading customer service remains central to our offering and we continue to make excellent progress in this area. Our focus on greater in-sourcing of customer facing roles, improving box reliability and encouraging more customer interactions online is delivering a meaningful improvement in customer satisfaction scores, which increased by seven percentage points on the prior year to their highest-ever levels. At the same time, we saw our sixth successive quarter of improvement in the Ofcom customer survey and we continue to lead the market in the service provision of both pay TV and broadband. We are making sustained investment in people and systems so that we can deliver better service for our customers and this has seen us continue with the transition of our service estate in-house. We have integrated our third-party customer service centres in Cardiff and Glasgow more closely within the Sky-owned estate, whilst 250 colleagues have been recruited for our new in-house facility in Dublin opening in November 2012, meaning that more Sky staff will be dealing directly with customers. Driving efficiency and reliability Our integration of design, manufacture and repair of set-top boxes continues to deliver significantly improved reliability for customers and cost efficiencies for the business. 6.7 million customers now have our most reliable Sky+HD box, up 1.6 million on the prior year. This was a strong contributor to a 12% fall in service visits versus the prior year, and a 45% fall versus the same quarter in 2010. We expect to make similar improvements for our communications customers as our new broadband router, developed in-house and launched this month,adds additional capability to diagnose and fix faults remotely. In our call centre estate greater use of online services by customers and further improvements in issue resolution led to a 19% reduction in calls versus prior year and 30% lower than three years ago. This greater efficiency across the organisation is not only delivering greater satisfaction for our customers, it is also reducing costs and giving us increased capacity to invest more where customers see value. BROADER CONTRIBUTION As Sky has evolved, so has the positive impact that our business has on the UK economy, the creative industries, and the wider community in which we operate. We recognise that our future success depends on the relationships we have with millions of families across the UK and Ireland and we understand that, increasingly, those families look for companies that share their values and make a positive contribution to society. As an example of this, we opened Sky Skills Studio in September, an exciting new initiative for young people, based at our west London headquarters. Our aim is to build confidence and life skills by giving school children the opportunity to create their own television reports in our state-of-the-art broadcast facilities. We expect Sky Skills Studio to reach 12,000 young people between the ages of 8 and 18, from across the country every year. Post quarter-end, we beat our target to get one million more people cycling regularly by 2013. The ambitious five-year target was set in 2008, when Sky first joined up with British Cycling, as a way of measuring the success of a partnership that has aimed to grow cycling in Britain at all levels, from the grassroots to the elite. DETAILED FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE Our financial performance for the quarter was strong. Good revenue growth of 4% combined with a 3% reduction in other operating costs, delivered operating profit of GBP310 million and basic earnings per share of 13.4p, up 16%, all on an adjusted basis. Unless otherwise stated, all figures and growth rates included below exclude adjusting items. Revenue Group revenue increased by 4% to GBP1,715 million (2012: GBP1,657 million), with growth in both retail and wholesale operations more than offsetting a weak quarter for advertising. Retail subscription revenue grew by 4% to GBP1,428 million (2012:GBP1,368 million), reflecting continued product and customer growth as well as one month's benefit of the September price rise. The launch of a dedicated Formula 1 channel was the main contributor to the strength in wholesale revenues, up 11% to GBP92 million (2012: GBP83 million), whilst advertising revenue was 10% lower year on year at GBP95 million (2012:GBP105 million), predominantly due to the market decline this quarter as a result of the Olympics. Other revenue increased by 4% to GBP80 million (2012: GBP77 million) due to higher Sky Bet revenues, the sub licence of a football World Cup qualifying match to ITV and the first time inclusion of revenues from Parthenon Media Group, now rebranded as Sky Vision. These were artially offset by a GBP4 million reduction in the sale of set-top boxes to Sky Italia. Costs We once again delivered a strong performance on costs, with a three percentage point reduction in other operating costs releasing resources for greater investment on screen whilst still allowing the Group's operating margin to expand to 18.1%. Programming costs increased by GBP54 million to GBP589 million (2012:GBP535 million) in line with guidance given at FY12 results. Over half of this increase was due to the first-time inclusion of Formula 1 and the biennial Ryder Cup with a further GBP3 million associated with additional Olympic feeds on the Sky platform. Entertainment costs accounted for GBP17 million of the increase as we continued to invest in new and exclusive UK-commissioned content such as 'The British', 'Hunderby' and 'Sinbad'. Whilst we expect such originated high-end content to produce long-term differentiation for our channels, the majority of cost is amortised against first showing. Excluding the biennial costs associated with the Ryder Cup, underlying operating profit growth was 10% year on year. Our work on network efficiency within our communications business resulted in excellent operating leverage in direct network costs, up only 6% to GBP172 million (2012: GBP162 million) despite a 22% increase in home communications products. We now have over 2.7 million fully unbundled customers, up 48% year on year, and have put our own equipment in over two thousand BT exchanges, meaning that our unbundled network can now serve 84% of UK homes. Our focus on efficiency within other operating costs led to a GBP21 million absolute reduction to GBP644 million (2012: GBP665 million) and a 250 basis point reduction as a percentage of sales. Contributing to this, administration costs were down GBP8 million, subscriber management costs were down GBP5 million and transmission and technology costs were down GBP3 million, with savings arising from the aggregation of small improvements over time rather than initiatives specific to the quarter. Marketing costs also fell by a net GBP5 million with lower acquisition volumes offsetting some additional investment in above-the-line spend. Earnings On an adjusted basis, profit before tax was GBP291 million (2012: GBP274 million) and included the Group's share of joint ventures and associates' profits of GBP7 million (2012: GBP7 million) and a net interest charge of GBP26 million (2012: GBP28 million). After tax of GBP70 million (2012: GBP72 million) at an effective rate of 24%, our adjusted profit for the period was GBP221 million (2012: GBP202 million), generating adjusted basic earnings per share of 13.4 pence (2012: 11.6 pence), an increase of 16%. Cash generated from operations Cash generated from operations was lower at GBP224 million (2012: GBP292 million). Growth in EBITDA of GBP11 million (GBP29 million excluding the Ryder Cup and one-off costs of extra Olympic feeds) was offset by a working capital outflow of GBP185 million due to seasonal outflows on rights costs, particularly in relation to Premier League, Football League and an increase in the volume of our own original commissions. The majority of the Group's working capital movements occur intra-year and arise as a result of upfront payments for rights at the commencement of availability windows (sports, movies and U.S. entertainment) or at the production stage (originated content). This quarter we incurred upfront payments relating to the new cricket rights agreed in the period and additional commissions in comedy and drama on Sky1 and Sky Atlantic. Exceptional Items Reported profit after tax of GBP219 million (2012: GBP225 million) included an exceptional loss of GBP3 million relating to the re-measurement of derivative financial instruments not qualifying for hedge accounting(2012: GBP1 million gain), and a benefit of GBP1 million relating to the tax effect. Please refer to Appendix 2 for a detailed reconciliation of reported and adjusted numbers. LEGAL AND REGULATORY Competition Commission (CC) The CC published its final report on 2nd August, concluding that Sky's position in the acquisition and distribution of movies in the first pay window ("first pay movies") does not adversely affect competition in the pay TV retail market and that, accordingly, remedies are not required. Parties had until 2nd October to apply tothe Competition Appeal Tribunal for a judicial review of the CC's decision. No party did so. Competition Appeals Tribunal (CAT) On 8th August, the CAT handed down the confidential version of its judgment in the appeals against Ofcom's Pay TV statement, which was disclosed only to members of a confidentiality ring. At the same time, the CAT published a non-confidential summary of the judgment, which provided an overview of the CAT's main conclusions and the outcome of the appeals themselves. The non-confidential version of the full judgment was published on 26th October. Sky's appeal has been successful. The CAT has found that Ofcom's core competition concern is unfounded, that Sky did not obstruct fair and effective competition in the retailing of Sky's premium sports channels and that Ofcom misinterpreted the evidence of Sky's negotiations with other retailers for supply of its channels. The parties have until 26th November to apply for permission to appeal against the decision. Appeals are allowed on a point of law only. Fit and proper On 20th September Ofcom published its decision finding Sky to be a fit and proper holder of its broadcasting licences.As a company, Sky remains committed to high standards of governance and continues to take its regulatory obligations extremely seriously. Schedule 1 - KPI Summary All figures (000)FY12 unless stated FY10/11 FY11/12 FY12/13 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Total 9,979 10,150 10,223 10,294 10,371 10,471 10,549 10,606 10,654 customers Total 22,586 23,790 24,591 25,375 26,058 26,830 27,734 28,365 28,898 products Television9,956 10,096 10,147 10,187 10,213 10,253 10,268 10,288 10,308 Sky+HD 3,154 3,497 3,686 3,822 3,925 4,063 4,222 4,343 4,468 Multiroom 2,158 2,219 2,237 2,250 2,295 2,350 2,378 2,402 2,423 Broadband 2,802 3,006 3,161 3,335 3,485 3,651 3,863 4,001 4,103 Telephony 2,570 2,757 2,916 3,101 3,248 3,407 3,627 3,768 3,888 Line 1,946 2,215 2,444 2,680 2,892 3,106 3,376 3,563 3,708 Rental Other metrics Triple-play 23% 24% 26% 27% 28% 29% 31% 32% 33% % ARPU (GBP) 510 536 537 538 535 544 546 548 550 Churn 11.2% 9.5% 10.4% 10.4% 11.1% 9.6% 10.1% 9.9% 10.9% % Fixed Network Metrics On-net base 2,450 2,659 2,856 3,045 3,205 3,403 3,636 3,778 3,882 MPF base 1,064 1,247 1,435 1,686 1,869 2,146 2,423 2,588 2,762 SMPF base 1,386 1,412 1,421 1,359 1,336 1,257 1,213 1,190 1,120 MPF % 43% 47% 50% 55% 58% 63% 67% 69% 71% SMPF % 57% 53% 50% 45% 42% 37% 33% 31% 29% Off-net 352 347 305 290 280 248 227 223 221 base Total 2,802 3,006 3,161 3,335 3,485 3,651 3,863 4,001 4,103 Broadband On-net % 87% 88% 90% 91% 92% 93% 94% 94% 95% Total no. of LLU 1,293 1,434 1,549 1,577 1,732 1,907 1,964 1,965 2,036 exchanges Enquiries: Analysts/Investors: Francesca Pierce Tel: 020 7032 3337 Edward Steel Tel: 020 7032 2093 Lang Messer Tel: 020 7032 2657 E-mail: email@example.com Press: Alice Macandrew Tel: 020 7705 3000 Stephen Gaynor Tel: 020 7705 3000 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org There will be a conference call for analysts and investors at 08.30 a.m. (GMT) today. Participants must register by contacting Camilla Regan on +44 20 7251 3801or at Camilla.regan@RLMFinsbury.com. In addition, the live webcast will be available via http://www.sky.com/ investorsand subsequently be available for replay. There will be a separate conference call for US analysts and investors at 11.00 a.m. (EDT) today. Details of this call have been sent to US institutions and can be obtained from Dana Diver at Taylor Rafferty on +1 212 889 4350. A live conference call will be available on Sky's corporate website, http://www.sky.com/corporate. A replay will subsequently be available. Use of measures not defined under IFRS This press release contains certain information on the Group's financial position, results and cash flows that have been derived from measures calculated in accordance with IFRS. This information should not be read in isolation from the related IFRS measures. Forward looking statements This document contains certain forward looking statements with respect to the Group's financial condition, results of operations and business and management's strategy, plans and objectives for the Group. These statements include, without limitation, those that express forecasts, expectations and projections, such as forecasts, expectations and projections in relation to new products and services, the potential for growth of free-to-air and pay television, fixed line telephony, broadband and bandwidth requirements, advertising growth, DTH and OTT customer growth, Multiroom, On Demand (previously Anytime+), NOW TV, Sky Go, Sky+HD and other services penetration, revenue, administration costs and other costs, advertising growth, churn, profit, cash flow, product penetration, our broadband network footprint, content, wholesale, marketing and capital expenditure and proposals for returning capital to shareholders. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such forward looking statements are reasonable, these statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, some of which are beyond our control, are difficult to predict and could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied or forecast in the forward looking statements. Information on the significant risks and uncertainties are described in the "Principal risks and uncertainties" section of Sky's Annual Report for the full year ended 30 June 2012. Copies of the Annual Report are available from the British Sky Broadcasting Group plc web page at www.sky.com/corporate. All forward looking statements in this document are based on information known to the Group on the date hereof. The Group undertakes no obligation publicly to update or revise any forward looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Glossary of Terms A glossary of terms is included within the Annual Report and on our corporate investor relations web page at http://corporate.sky.com/ investors/glossary . Click on, or paste the following link into your web browser, to view the associated PDF document http://www.rns-pdf.londonstockexchange.com/rns/0390Q_-2012-10-31.pdf This information is provided by RNS The company news service from the London Stock Exchange END Contacts: RNS Customer Services 0044-207797-4400 email@example.com http://www.rns.com Copyright 2012, Marketwire, All rights reserved. -0-
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