Altice France revenue decline eases to 1.1% in Q1 as operational metrics improve

Thursday 17 May 2018 | 11:53 CET | News

Altice has reported first quarter revenues of EUR 2.6 billion for its French operations, down 1.1 percent year-on-year (-4.5% in Q4 2017). The company said that the operational turnaround at SFR was bearing fruit and that its quarterly subscriber metrics were the best since the operator was taken over from Vivendi.

SFR’s consumer mobile business returned to positive growth (+0.9% on a reported basis, +1.6% ex-VAT benefit), reflecting an increase in postpaid customers. This improvement partly offset the ongoing negative revenue performance of the fixed-line consumer business (-4.5% on a reported basis, -3.9% ex-VAT benefit). The VAT impact is due to the new rules which took effect in March for online press services offered as part of fixed broadband and mobile bundles.

Altice France’s adjusted EBITDA progressed to EUR 915 million, up 0.7 percent on Q1 2017 (+2.2% in Q4 2017), while the adjusted EBITDA margin improved to 35.2 percent (+0.6 percentage points year-on-year), partly as a result of cost savings from the employee restructuring programme.

The first quarter operational performance was marked by strong consumer postpaid net additions (+239,000 versus +80,000 in Q4 2017 and +68,000 in Q1 2017), helped by what the company described as a significant churn improvement. Increased customer retention, coupled with a higher share of gross additions from the no-frills RED brand, had a negative impact on consumer postpaid ARPU, which declined to EUR 24.10 (-5.3% year-on-year on a reported basis, -4.8% ex-VAT benefit).

The consumer fixed broadband customer base returned to positive growth for the first time since Altice took control of SFR, with 71,000 quarterly net additions (-45,000 in Q4 2017). Fibre subscriptions increased by 96,000 since December (+69,000 in Q4 2017), supported by a larger fibre footprint, while the quarterly net loss in DSL connections eased to 25,000 (-114,000 in Q4 2017).

As noted for the mobile operations, the company said that its more proactive retention strategy had a negative effect on fixed broadband ARPU, which declined to EUR 34.70 (-3.6% year-on-year on a reported basis, -3.0% ex-VAT benefit). 

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Categories: General
Companies: Altice / SFR
Countries: France
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