Charter loses 36,000 video subscribers, but revenue grows due to rate hikes, promos ending

Charter's updated logo
In all, Charter Communications lost approximately 300,000 video primary service units in 2018 but added more than 1 million broadband PSUs. (Charter)

Charter Communications lost 36,000 residential video customers during the fourth quarter but still managed to increase video revenues.

Charter swung to a loss year over year after adding 2,000 video subscribers in the fourth quarter of 2017. But the loss was an improvement over the 66,000 video subscribers lost in the third quarter. The company ended 2018 with 16.1 million residential video subscribers.

Video revenues totaling $4.4 billion in the fourth quarter represented an increase of 3.4% compared to one year ago. The company attributed the modest growth to annual rate adjustments, promotional roll-off and higher bundled revenue allocation relating to the launch of Spectrum pricing and packaging in Legacy TWC and Legacy Bright House.


Like this story? Subscribe to FierceVideo!

The Video industry is an ever-changing world where big ideas come along daily. Cable, Media and Entertainment, Telco, and Tech companies rely on FierceVideo for the latest news, trends, and analysis on video creation and distribution, OTT delivery technologies, content licensing, and advertising strategies. Sign up today to get news and updates delivered to your inbox and read on the go.

RELATED: Charter loses 66K video subscribers but grows video revenue in Q3

In all, Charter lost approximately 300,000 video primary service units in 2018 but added more than 1 million broadband PSUs.

"We performed well in 2018, growing our Internet customer base by 1.3 million, cable revenue by 4.7%, and cable Adjusted EBITDA by 6.5%—very strong operating and financial performance, particularly in the midst of what we believe is the largest cable integration ever," said Tom Rutledge, chairman and CEO of Charter, in a statement. "In 2019, we expect the operating and cash flow performance of our cable business will further demonstrate the superiority of our network, the returns of our recent investments, and the longterm value creation driven by our consumer-focused operating strategy."

Charter’s consolidated fourth-quarter revenues grew 5.9% to $11.2 billion thanks to residential revenue growth of 3.9%, commercial revenue growth of 4.5% and advertising revenue growth of 34.1%. The big spike in ad revenue (which still only totaled $562 million during the quarter) was largely attributed to political spending. Fourth-quarter adjusted EBITDA of $4.2 billion grew 4.6% year over year.

Charter’s operating expenses during the quarter rose 6.7% year over year due in part to increased programming expenses, up 5.5% (or $147 million).

Suggested Articles

AT&T TV Now – formerly DirecTV Now – is raising prices for its streaming television service for the second time this year.

Xandr, AT&T’s advanced advertising and analytics business, has acquired clypd, a TV advertising data platform for broadcast and cable TV networks.

Quibi, an upcoming mobile-first streaming service, has found a logical distribution partner in T-Mobile.