DirecTV subs up, profits down

Chris Forrester
DirecTV turned in quite reasonable Q1 new subscriber numbers, up 460,000 and well ahead of market expectations, but the cost of acquiring these new viewers ate into profits. Profits were down 46%.

Net profit fell to $201m from $371m a year earlier. Revenue rose by 7% to $4.9bn helped by increased ARPU (up 0.8%), and the best new subs growth for 4 years. These Q1 subs were up 67% on last year, and generally considered to have been helped by problems at EchoStarís DISH network. Indeed, DirecTVís churn was also at historically low levels of 1.33% (per month) a 10-year best.

The growth took DirecTV to above 18m subscribers, at 18.1m. DirecTV is now en-route to a merger with Liberty Media Corp.