Altice USA drops 35K pay-TV users in Q1, but U.S. cable revenue beats broader company performance

Altice USA
In its earnings release, Altice outlined U.S. plans to deploy a fiber-to-the-home network. Image: Altice USA

French telecom conglomerate Altice NV reported 3.2% revenue growth in the first quarter to €5.93 billion ($6.46 billion), with its recent U.S. cable acquisitions Cablevision (now called Optimum) and Suddenlink driving quarterly revenue growth of 3.2% and 5.3%, respectively. 

Keeping with the broader pay-TV industry’s cord-cutting trend, Optimum lost about 15,000 video customers during the first quarter, ending the period with a remaining base of 2.41 million. Suddenlink lost around 20,000 pay-TV subscribers and now has a base of 1.08 million

Optimum, however, added 37,000 high-speed internet users during the period, while Suddenlink added 22,000.

RELATED: Altice to open 400-worker office in Plano, Texas

Revenue from residential broadband services was up 16.8% year over year at Suddenlink and 8.8% at Optimum, with 66% percent of Altice U.S. broadband customers now paying for download speeds of 100 Mbps or higher. In January 2015, only around 15% of the combined Optimum/Suddenlink footprint took speeds that high, the company said. 

Notably, capital expenditures were down significantly in the U.S., with capex declining 24% year over year at Optimum and 35% at Suddenlink. Altice NV, which paid $17.7 for Optimum and $9.1 billion for a controlling interest in Suddenlink, closed on both purchases last spring, promising investors major cuts in operational costs. 

In its earnings release, Altice outlined U.S. plans to deploy a FTTH network, and broadband speeds up to 10 Gbps, to all of the Optimum footprint, and a portion of Suddenlink customers over the next five years. 

The company also said it will deploy its hybrid pay-TV set-top, cable modem and Wi-Fi router, originally dubbed “The Box,” in the second quarter.

“We believe this investment will significantly improve our competitive position in the U.S. video market,” Altice said in its earnings release. 

Suggested Articles

Comcast is increasing X1 cloud DVR storage hours 60 to 150, more than doubling the capacity.

Google’s two-fold plan to capture more connected TV advertising share is taking shape across the company’s YouTube and Android TV divisions.

Locast said it now offers more than 45 local TV channels for free in the Tampa, St. Petersburg and Clearwater TV market in Florida.