Sky says news is not a critical part of its business

by Lawrence Cooper January 26, 2018, 1:22
Sky says news is not a critical part of its business

The rise of BT Sport has also hit Sky's traditional dominance in the world of sport. Sky added 365,000 new customers and reduced the rate at which subscribers leave the business.

Fox's offer for the 61 per cent of Sky it doesn't already own is 1,075 pence a share.

For the six months ended December 31, the United Kingdom pay-TV operator recorded pretax profit of GBP483 million, up from GBP377 million in the year ago period, on a revenue of GBP6.74 billion and GBP6.41 billion, respectively.

Last year Sky announced that it would be making its full platform available without a dish and now we're finally hearing more details about it. This increase came as better operating efficiency helped offset the cost of rolling out new services like Sky mobile and Sky Q, plus a £72m increase in costs from German Bundesliga rights.

The results come after earlier this week the United Kingdom competition watchdog ruled that 21st Century Fox's bid for the London-listed company was not in the public interest.

Across Europe, Sky revenues were up five percent to £6.7 million as customer numbers reached 22.9 million.

"We will launch Sky without a satellite dish, with all its channels and on demand content streamed over IP", said Jeremy Darroch, Sky's group chief executive this morning. "We will grow our investment in Sky Originals every year and we expect, overtime, to be spending less on second tier sports, linear only entertainment channels and niche movies".

"This is a major development for Sky that will open up headroom in existing markets, improve our cost to serve for some customer segments, and offer a future way to take Sky into new markets", Sky said.

The satellite-company, which operates in Italy, Germany and Austria as well as Britain and Ireland, said it would pay an interim dividend of 13.06 pence a share, on top of a special dividend of 10 pence, which UBS analysts said was a positive surprise.

"We'll launch first in Italy before taking it to Austria and ultimately deploying across all our key markets".

"The greatest disaster that could befall plurality of media in this country would be if Sky News ... were to be closed by its new owner", said John Whittingdale, a former culture secretary, in the House of Commons on Tuesday.

"We are very much focused in the process with the (regulator) CMA", he told reporters.

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