Posting narrowing losses, satellite broadcaster and leading British digital operator BSkyB announced its subscriber figures are marginally lower than analysts’ projections, contrasting with the higher-than-expected surge in customers recently unveiled by rival platform ITV Digital [WAMN: 25-Oct-01].

For its fiscal first quarter, Sky Digital boasted 5.498 million subscribers, below predictions of 5.5m. However, it remains some way ahead of ITV Digital, which can only claim 1.217m.

The figures include the loss of 145,000 subscribers when BSkyB switched off its analogue broadcasts [WAMN: 02-Jul-01], though this was offset by a 190,000 rise in digital customers.

For the three months to September 30, the broadcaster’s operating losses surged 23% to £45m ($66m) on a 24% rise in revenues to £643m, with losses narrowing from £123.6m to £89m. In addition, average revenues per subscriber climbed 8%.

News source: BBC Online Business News (UK)