Premiere World, the cash-haemorrhaging German pay-TV firm whose losses helped bring down media empire Kirch Gruppe earlier this year, is bleeding euros less profusely these days.

For the third quarter, net losses fell 63% year-on-year to €85.6 million ($83.3m; £53.6m), following an expenses clampdown that halved operating costs. Sales edged up 2.2% to €206.4m.

Premiere’s subscriber base at the end of Q3 stood at 2.44m, leaving it on course for its target of 2.5m before Christmas.

In terms of EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization), the firm posted a €15.9m loss. It expects to break even when it has 2.9m subscribers, forecast for the second half of 2004.

To achieve such growth, Premiere needs to attract long-term investors, hence the desire by Georg Kofler to cut costs and boost the bottom line.

Data sourced from: Financial Times; additional content by WARC staff