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NTL - which recently emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after last year's annus horribilis - attracted almost 400,000 new high speed Internet customers in 2002, the company announced today.

Publishing full-year results today the cableco said that it had 517,00 high speed punters at the end of 2002 - an increase of 338 per cent on the year. Around 160,000 of those new high speed Internet customers were existing dial-up punters who upgraded to faster services.

As of the March 21 this year, the cableco had around 650,000 high speed cable modem customers, it said.

However, while NTL crows about the increase in high speed Net users, overall it managed to lose 80,000 customers during the year. At the start of 2002 it had 2.76m punters, but the finished the year with just 2.69m.

According to Barclay Knapp, president and chief exec of NTL, the company is working hard to cut costs and improve products and customer service. This, and a raft of other "positive trends" would lead to even more customers joining up with the outfit, he said.

Revenue for the year rose slightly from £3.2bn in 2001 to £3.3bn. However, the cableco made a pre-tax loss of £2.4bn, down from the £11.7bn in 2001. ®

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