Virgin Media beefs up services and stems subscriber losses

08 November 2007
Virgin Media has announced a significant increase in customer subscriptions following its third quarter financial report released yesterday despite its ongoing feud with Sky BSB over content rights which marred the firm’s first foray into the digital TV sector.

Following a loss of 40,000 subscribers after Sky’s basic channels package were taken off Virgin customers in March this year, the media company recorded a promising return to customer growth during the third quarter of 2007 with 13,000 net additions to its cable network.

Other increases include 20,400 net additions to its TV package and 15,900 net additions to its mobile network compared to a loss of 46,500 in the second quarter. Moreover, the on net customer base rose to 4.8 million at the end of September, with 47 percent of customers opting to sign up to triple play bundles, compared to 38.7 per cent a year ago.

Neil Berkett, Acting Chief Executive Officer of Virgin Media, comments: “Our third quarter results show a significant turnaround in customer and RGU (Revenue Generating Units) growth with our best customer, broadband and telephony growth since the cable merger in March 2006.

“With the cable merger integration expected to be complete by year end, we can focus on continuing to improve the fundamentals, enhancing our products, reducing our churn, and delivering on our competitive strengths.”

Virgin has pulled out the stops since it lost out on the Sky channels which included popular programmes such as Lost and 24 but has since redeemed itself with six new Setanta Sports channels now offered free of charge to customers. The firm has also focused on improving its broadband offering by creating a new and effective high speed connection for quad-play customers.

Virgin Media’s ‘On Demand’ service has proved popular with customers after it was reported that over 23 million downloads were made from the ‘Video On-Demand’ pages as well as reporting an increase in customers requesting music video downloads from over 1000 music artists.

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