Virgin Media may list in London

Chris Forrester

British cable company Virgin Media, currently listed on the NASDAQ exchange, is investigating the possibility of a secondary listing in the UK. CEO Neil Berkett said a London listing would open the companyís accessibility to European investors. Virgin also unveiled something of a mixed bag of quarterly results.

Most analysts focused on the fact that while BSkyB added 124,000 net new subs during the half year, Virgin Media saw its numbers shrink by 26,000 in Q2. Broadband growth was also extremely modest, adding just 5,100 new subs in Q2, which compares poorly with 54,000 growth during the same time last year. Virgin says it expects to return to more tangible growth in this current quarter once fresh advertising kicks in.

However, there was some encouraging news. ARPU grew from £41.68 this time last year to £43.27 now. Revenues overall fell from £1.89bn last year to £1.87bn this. But losses were lowered, from £449m last year to a much-improved £49m in Q2.

Also on the upside Berkett explained that some 58% of Virginís clients were now triple play (TV, phone and broadband) and this was helping with churn-reduction. Triple play clients were more sticky, and had churn rates of a perfectly reasonable 0.9%. Non-triple play clients churned at a rate of 2.7% per month.

Virginís shares were down 2.7% to $11.07.