New Horizon landmark for Liberty

February 14, 2014 06.00 Europe/London By Chris Dziadul

Horizon TV multiscreenLiberty Global ended 2013 with a total of 500,000 Horizon TV subscribers in the Netherlands, Switzerland, Ireland and Germany, while its TiVo customer total stood at 2 million in the UK.

All told, its 0.5 million next generation subscriber total of 2.5 million represented 19% of the company’s digital TV base.

In Western Europe, Liberty Global lost 3,000 digital cable subscribers in the UK in Q4, while the strongest growth was seen in Switzerland (+30,700).

In Central and Eastern Europe, Romania was again the best performing market in the DTH sector, with Focus Sat adding 25,500 subscribers in the fourth quarter. The biggest digital cable gain was in Poland (+25,300), though at the same time UPC Polska lost 40,800 analogue subscribers.

Commenting on the company’s results, Mike Fries, CEO said: “2013 was a watershed year for Liberty Global. With the acquisition of Virgin Media, we significantly enhanced our scale which now encompasses 47 million homes passed and over 24 million unique customers. In January, we completed the Chellomedia Sale for approximately $1 billion in net proceeds, and we also reached an agreement to purchase Ziggo N.V. (“Ziggo”), the largest cable operator in the Netherlands. The Ziggo acquisition will create a nationwide footprint in one of our core markets and enable us to provide Dutch consumers with even better broadband, video and voices services. At the same time, we will be the leading challenger in mobile and B2B.

“Adjusting to include Virgin Media results for all of 2013, our full-year combined revenue and OCF would have been $17.3 billion and $7.9 billion, respectively. Both figures represent rebased growth of 4%, consistent with our medium-term targets for mid-single digit growth. Our financial results without Virgin Media were even stronger in 2013, as we delivered 5% rebased revenue and OCF growth. Our combined Adjusted FCF was $1.8 billion, which represents a 16% increase compared to 2012, consistent with our mid-teens free cash flow growth objective over the medium term. Looking ahead to 2014, we expect accelerating rebased OCF growth compared to 2013, and we expect to deliver Adjusted FCF of approximately $2.0 billion for the full year.”