Telewest cuts losses

Half a million broadband customers..

Telewest reduced net losses for the first three months of the year to £36m, from £187m lost in the first quarter of 2003. Q1 turnover was up £9m to £344m compared to the three months ended 31 March 2003.

The company claimed its highest ever average revenue per user of £45.05 a month or £541 a year. Household churn is less than one per cent a month and Telewest claims 18.9 per cent of customers enjoy "triple play penetration" - less rude than it sounds this refers to customers with phone, television and Internet services.

Telewest is just short of half a million broadband customers, with 498,000 installed as of 12 May 2004. It added an extra 50,000 accounts in the first quarter.

Chad Raube, director of Internet services at Telewest, said: "We're still number one for broadband within our franchise areas ...We announced at the end of April that we'd be boosting the bandwidth of our services, for the same price, and I'm pleased to say we've now completed the upgrades in double quick time."

Telewest is currently in default on parts of its £5.4bn debt mountain. The company is restructuring and carrying out a debt-for shares swap to sort this out. It will meet with creditors on 1 June. As part of the financial restructuring Telewest shares will move from the London Stock Exchange to Nasdaq. ®

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