Feeds

Virgin Media finally turns an annual profit

Only took five years since beardie rebrand

The next step in data security

Virgin Media pulled in annual revenue that was just shy of £4bn, the company reported this morning.

The telco recorded an operating cash flow of £1.6bn, while net income for the year ended 31 December 2011 sat at £75.9m - that's the first time Virgin Media has racked up an annual profit from its business.

It took the company five long years to get there after being rebranded as Virgin Media in February 2007 following the merger of NTL, Telewest and Virgin.net with Virgin Mobile.

Virgin Group - Branson's investment vehicle - licenses the Virgin brand to Virgin Media, which is why you are seeing Olympic champion Usain Bolt pretending to be the beardy boss in VM ads currently running on the telly.

The company followed in the footsteps of rival BSkyB by making more money out of its annual revenue per user (ARPU) for its cable service, which climbed to £47.85 in VM's final quarter of the year.

The telco said:

We increased our contract base by a record 102,500 contract customers in the quarter, nearly twice as many as in Q4 last year. Virtually all of these contract net additions were into cable homes - another record at 101,000. The total contract base increased 26 per cent to 1.52 million from a year ago.

There was plenty of churn, however.

For the first time ever, we now have more contract customers than prepay. Our prepay subscriber base reduced by 53,500 in the quarter compared to 54,200 in the same quarter last year. This takes the prepay base to 1.51 million, down 19 per cent during the year.

The tactic among ISPs is to pursue cash from customers willing to pay more. The result typically means fewer quarterly subscribers - VM pulled in 15,000 cable punters in Q4 - but an increased ARPU. Indeed the company boasted this morning that it now has the best ARPU in the market.

Virgin Media said its TiVo subscriber base now stood at 273,000, which means it added around 50,000 customers signing up to the time-shifting telly service in the last quarter. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Why Oracle CEO Larry Ellison had to go ... Except he hasn't
Silicon Valley's veteran seadog in piratical Putin impression
Big Content Australia just blew a big hole in its credibility
AHEDA's research on average content prices did not expose methodology, so appears less than rigourous
Bono: Apple will sort out monetising music where the labels failed
Remastered so hard it would be difficult or impossible to master it again
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.