Sky Deutschland Shares Jump On First Quarter Figures

German pay-TV channel sees subscribers up, losses down but still expects to end the year in the red.

CANNES - Shares in Sky Deutschland, the German pay-TV group controlled by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp,  shot up Thursday on first quarter results that showed a drop in losses and subscriber growth.

Sky stock closed up 7.75% after the German group said subscribers rose to 2.72 million in Q1, compared to less below 2.5 million this time last year. Revenue was up 15% to $385 million (€269.6 million) and operating losses down to $124 million (€86.9 million) from €97 million in Q1 2010. Perhaps more significantly, Sky chopped its churn rate, the rate at which new customers cancel their subscriptions, in half to just under 10%.

Sky Deutschland CEO Brian Sullivan said the company would continue to trim losses but would still end the year in the red.