Comcast Revenues Up 32 Percent, Gains Broadband Subscribers

By Erin Harrison May 04, 2011

Comcast may be losing TV market share, but it’s more then making up for on the broadband side. In its first quarter earnings call May 4, Comcast officials reported quarterly revenues of $12.1 billion, a 32% jump from one year earlier. 

The company added 418,000 broadband subscribers in the quarter, compared to 189,000 for Time Warner Cable, 98,000 for Verizon and 175,000 for AT&T, according to Broadband Reports.

In contrast, Comcast had earnings of 31 cents per share on $9.2 billion in revenue in the first quarter of 2010.

In an earnings call on May 4, Comcast Chairman and CEO Brian Roberts said first quarter results showed “continuing strength in three key areas: financial performance, subscriber growth, and customer service.”

With the closing of the NBC Universal transaction in January 2011, Comcast consolidated their results, according to Marlene Dooner, senior vice president of investor relations, explaining the company would report results in five segments: Cable Communications, Cable Networks, Broadcast Television, Filmed Entertainment and Theme Parks

According to the earnings report, total cable revenue was up by 6% and operating cash flow increased by nearly 8%. Subscriber growth was strong in high speed Internet with 418,000 net additions as Comcast continues to gain market share and to significantly outpace the net additions of our competitors, Roberts said.

For the first quarter of 2011, cable revenue increased 5.8% to $9.1 billion compared to $8.6 billion in the first quarter of 2010. Company official said this increase indicates growth across Comcast’s residential video, high-speed Internet and voice services, a 49.9% increase in business services and a 10.4% increase in advertising revenue. Reflecting a growing number of residential customers taking multiple products, rate adjustments, and a higher contribution from business services, monthly average total revenue per video customer increased 9.3% to $132.91.

During a conference call with analysts to discuss Comcast’s first-quarter earnings, Steve Burke, chief executive of NBC Universal, commented the company would spend $200 million more this year on prime-time shows, in hopes to raise ratings for the NBC network. The cable giant will spend an additional $100 million on programming for the company’s cable networks including giants like USA, Syfy, E! and Bravo, to keep them at the top spots they currently occupy.

According to Comcast CFO Michael J. Angelakis, the company is executing on its 2011 financial plans outlined in its last earnings call, including a 19% increase to its dividend and this year’s planned completion of Comcast’s existing share repurchase authorization, which now has 1.6 billion remaining.

Erin Harrison is Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives, for TMC, where she oversees the company's strategic editorial initiatives, including the launch of several new print and online initiatives. She plays an active role in the print publications and TechZone360, covering IP communications, information technology and other related topics. To read more of Erin's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves

Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives

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