Feeds

Chucking cash at sport and broadband starts to pay off for BT

Wholesale, Openreach, biz and global services still flagging

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

BT shares climbed three per cent this morning off the back of decent end-of-year results from the one-time national telco, which saw its sales growth outshine market predictions.

But, despite being buoyed by its unexpected achievement of flat revenues of £18.3bn as well as a six per cent rise in adjusted pre-tax profit of £2.8bn for the year ended 31 March, some of BT's divisions continued to witness sagging sales.

The former state monopoly's wholesale wing recorded the biggest revenue drop, falling 7 per cent to £2.4bn from £2.6bn a year earlier. It blamed regulatory meddling from Ofcom relating to the migration of services off a previously terminated contract.

Openreach, meanwhile, reported flat sales down 1 per cent to £5bn for the full year. Once again, BT pointed the finger at the UK's communications watchdog by saying that price changes had a "negative impact of around £260m" in the past 12 months.

But the company added that growth in its fibre broadband sales, particularly in its final quarter, had helped offset Ofcom's interference.

BT told the City that it had now deployed its fibre to over 19 million premises, most of which are being served the technology via a street-side cabinet that then connects the property to the internet over the firm's existing copper wiring.

As the only supplier in the race for taxpayer-funded subsidies, BT has now won 44 Broadband Delivery UK rollout contracts. It said that Openreach had reached more than 630,000 premises, predominantly with its Fibre-to-the-cabinet tech to date.

During the fourth quarter, BT said Openreach added 217,000 DSL and fibre connections to its broadband service, a decline of 24 per cent compared with the same period a year earlier. It blamed repair work due to the floods in the country at the start of 2014 for shifting engineers' focus away from new installs.

In July 2013 BT's new boss Gavin Patterson split the telecom giant's retail division into two distinct wings: consumer and business. Previously, its retail division had suffered somewhat because biz numbers were included in its quarterly reports.

Now that Patterson has sliced those units into separate entities, its newly created consumer wing is on the up with revenue for the year climbing 4 per cent to £3.8bn. Its biz unit, on the other hand, reported flat sales of £3.5bn for the 12 months ended 31 March.

BT's boss said:

Our rollout is ahead of schedule with our fibre network passing more than 19 million premises, around two thirds of the UK. But we are not stopping there. All of our BDUK projects are underway and will help take the coverage of all fibre networks to at least 90 per cent of the UK, bringing significant benefits to communities across the nation.

BT Sport has proved very popular and we are delighted the service is now in around five million homes. For BT Consumer it underpinned a record 9 per cent growth in revenue in the fourth quarter and the lowest line losses in over five years. We achieved an excellent 79 per cent share of broadband market net additions in the quarter.

BT's total retail broadband base is now just shy of 7.3 million Brits, the company said. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers
Jilted Johns and Jennies with busy fingers face two years inside
Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook
New iPhone biz baron points to Apple's (his) greatest successes
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.