Sky Deutschland Posts Quarterly Loss, Adds Subs

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Sky Deutschland CEO Brian Sullivan

The German pay TV giant, which Rupert Murdoch's Fox is planning to sell to BSkyB, added 82,000 subs in the latest period.

German pay TV provider Sky Deutschland, controlled by Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox, on Wednesday reported a higher second-quarter underlying profit, adding 82,000 subscribers.

But it posted to a wider net loss, while analysts had predicted a small profit.

The company, which U.K. pay TV giant BSkyB recently agreed to acquire along with Fox's Sky Italia, said subscriber cancellations hit a record low.

Sky Deutschland posted a loss for the quarter of $3.3 million (2.5 million euros), compared with a loss of 900,000 euros a year ago. The company cited higher interest payments.‎

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization rose 8.5 percent to $60.5 million (45.3 million euros), though.‎

The BSkyB deal is set to create a European pay TV powerhouse with 20 million subscribers. Fox owns 39 percent of BSkyB.

Because of the planned deal, Sky Deutschland has shortened its fiscal year to end it after two quarters and start a new year in July, in line with BSkyB's fiscal year.

For the new fiscal year, Sky Deutschland expects to add 400,000-450,000 new subscribers. ‎ The company had previously projected it would hit those numbers by December.

Brian Sullivan, CEO of Sky Deutschland, said: “Having recently marked the fifth anniversary of Sky Deutschland, in what was not too long ago a dormant pay TV market, we have now seen 20 consecutive quarters of continuous growth, and we think the potential is just starting to be tapped. We couldn't be more excited about the year ahead.”

Twitter: @georgszalai