October 24, 2019 / 11:01 AM / a month ago

Comcast beats profit estimates on internet subscriber additions

Oct 24 (Reuters) - Media and communications company Comcast Corp beat Wall Street estimates for third-quarter profit on Thursday, as it added more high-speed internet customers, even as it lost video users.

The company gained 379,000 high-speed internet subscribers, beating analysts’ average estimate of 344,000 net additions, according to research firm FactSet.

Comcast lost 238,000 video customers in the three months ended Sept. 30, above the 203,000 loss estimated by FactSet and higher than the 224,000 it lost in the second quarter.

As consumers increasingly drop their pay TV subscriptions for streaming services, the Philadelphia-based Comcast is scheduled to launch a streaming service in 2020.

The service from its NBCUniversal unit will be called “Peacock,” and will offer a broad slate of original content, including “Dr Death” starring Emmy and Golden Globe winner Alec Baldwin, the company said in September.

The NBCUniversal business, which includes NBC Entertainment and Universal Pictures, reported revenue of $8.30 billion, down 3.5% from a year earlier.

British pay-TV group Sky, which Comcast acquired after outbidding Twenty-First Century Fox last year, generated revenue of $4.55 billion, missing estimates of $4.75 billion.

Total revenue jumped 21.2% to $26.83 billion, beating analysts’ average estimate of $26.77 billion, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Revenue from the high-speed internet business grew 9.3% to $4.72 billion.

Net income attributable to Comcast rose to $3.22 billion, or 70 cents per share, from $2.89 billion, or 62 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding items, the company earned 79 cents per share, ahead of estimates of 75 cents. (Reporting by Neha Malara in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

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