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Cable Operators

Charter Posts Strong Q4

Basic Sub Losses Reduced, High-Speed Data, Phone Additions Rise 2/21/2014 9:45 AM Eastern

About a week after its takeover attempt of Time Warner Cable was thwarted by Comcast, Charter Communications made its case for its focused operational strategy, reporting better than expected subscriber metrics that helped drive strong residential and cash flow growth.

Charter lost about 2,000 residential video subscribers in the period, a significant improvement from the 36,000 lost in the same period last year. Residential high-speed data customers rose by 93,000 in the quarter, and residential phone subscribers increased by 56,000 in the period.

Overall, Charter added 147,000 residential primary service units in the quarter – a measure of voice, video and data customers – up from the 57,000 residential PSU additions in the same period last year.

Those subscriber gains helped drive strong financial growth – revenue increased 5% in the quarter to $2.1 billion and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose 2.6% to $764 million.

“Our 2013 results show the early success of our strategies to drive accelerated customer growth. We now deliver a competitive, highly valuable suite of products and services to our customers, and we are beginning to execute at a high level, evidenced by improving trends through the year,” said Charter CEO Tom Rutledge in a statement. “We will continue that momentum in 2014, and plan to complete our all-digital initiative this year, allowing us to deliver a superior set of services across the vast majority of our footprint. Combined with improved service capabilities and higher customer satisfaction, these strategies are expected to result in greater market share and improving cash flow per home passed, as we position Charter for long-term growth and value creation.”

Charter is scheduled to have a conference call with analysts to discuss fourth quarter results at 10 a.m.

September