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Sky rudely barges TalkTalk off the top-three UK ISP podium

Bosses talk the talk, but customers walk the walk

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The decline and fall of TalkTalk sales each quarter is becoming a regular tale of woe for the budget telco, which this morning told the City that revenues had once again gone south as the company bled yet more punters.

The numbers also tell another story: TalkTalk is no longer the third-biggest ISP in the country. That accolade now goes to BSkyB, which reported earlier this month that 4.1 million subscribers were signed up to its broadband service.

TalkTalk said that during the three-month period ended 30 September, its broadband customer base stood at 4 million.

In its financial statement, the company explained that its total number of broadband punters had fallen by 4,000 subs in TalkTalk's second quarter, compared with Q1. This was due, it said, to the a decline in the firm's "off-net base" and a reduction in the "partially unbundled base" of customers.

Despite that, TalkTalk was keen to stress it had seen its "best quarterly net adds [new subscribers] performance in two years, demonstrating that before the scaling of our TV proposition, we are returning our base of phone and broadband customers to stability."

Indeed, a quick look back at previous quarters shows much larger numbers of customers abandoning TalkTalk's service in favour of a rival provider.

Sales dropped 2 per cent during the second quarter, with the company reporting revenues of £414m for the period.

In TalkTalk's first half of 2011, the budget telco pulled in total sales of £844m compared with £828m during the first six months of this year. It reported H1 2012 pre-tax profit of £46m.

The company reiterated that it expects to see a return to year-on-year sales growth in 2013.

"These results show real trading momentum and are a strong platform from which to build towards our medium term growth targets," said TalkTalk boss Dido Harding. ®

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