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Canadian cable and wireless carrier Rogers Communications on Thursday posted a drop in fourth-quarter earnings, but beat analyst estimates by securing higher per-customer mobile phone revenues and sharply higher NHL TV game revenues.
Toronto-based Rogers saw net income for the three months to Dec. 31, 2014 come to CAN$297 million (US$234 million), down 7 percent from earnings of CAN$320 million in 2013. Against that, overall revenues rose 4 percent to CAN$3.36 billion (US$2.7 billion), and earnings per share, excluding one-time items, was CAN$0.69 (US$0.55), well up from a street estimate of $0.64 (US$0.51) compiled by Bloomberg.
Rogers saw average monthly bills grow again, to CAN$67.43 (US$54.20) during the latest quarter. Wireless revenues rose 3 percent to CAN$1.89 billion (US$1.51 billion), cable revenues were unchanged at CAN$871 million (US$700 million) and media revenues, including radio and TV, jumped 20 percent CAN$544 million (US$437.4 million).
On the TV front, Rogers generated around CAN$100 million (US$80.4 million) in revenue during the current NHL season from its CAN$5.2 billion (US$4.2 billion), 12-year licensing agreement with the pro hockey league, and secured higher subscription revenues from its Sportsnet-branded TV sport channels.
Rogers’ cable TV assets compete directly in eastern Canada with rival telecom giant BCE’s top-rated CTV network and its Internet protocol TV service Bell Fibe.
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