* Lowers 2013 revenue growth expectations
* Set to cut prices to retain customers
* Lost 4.3 pct of TV subscribers in Q1
* Q1 core profit (EBITDA) 222.6 mln euros vs 219.7 mln
BRUSSELS, April 17 Dutch cable group Ziggo
lowered its forecast for revenue this year as it
planned price cuts to prevent a repeat of the customer losses it
suffered at the start of 2013.
The group, which has 2.85 million TV customers and 1.8
million broadband subscribers, repeated its outlook for 2013
core profit (EBITDA) to increase by between 2.5 and 3.5 percent
but said revenue growth would be at the lower end of this range.
The group, which lost 4.3 percent of TV subscribers in the
first quarter, had previously guided for revenue growth to be
slightly higher than core profit growth.
Ziggo, which competes with Dutch telecoms group KPN
as well as Liberty Global's UPC, said that this was
because customers with just a TV subscription were more likely
to buy a bundle including broadband and telephone services from
"We have carefully looked at market trends and we see that
we need to make a big effort to turn this around," said Chief
Executive Bernard Dijkhuizen, who will be replaced by former
Deutsche Telekom boss Rene Obermann in 2014.
In the first quarter, adjusted core profit (EBITDA) rose 3
percent to 222.6 million euros ($292.28 million), just above the
219.7 million expected in Starmine consensus of five analysts.
Ziggo, which is currently worth more on the stock market
than former Dutch telecoms monopoly KPN, did not
comment on Wednesday on U.S. cable investor Liberty Global
becoming its biggest shareholder with a 12.65 percent stake.
Liberty Global bought the stake in March from Barclays
Capital Securities, which was left holding the shares from a
sale by Ziggo's private equity backers Warburg Pincus and