Rogers Q1 2017: Profits up 28% to $294M; 60,000 New Postpaid Subscribers

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Rogers has had its strongest first-quarter performance in years, the Toronto-based carrier having reported $294 million in profits for the three months ending March 31, which is up 28% compared to the previous year. Adjusted net income rose 34% to $329 million, according to the results shared by the telco yesterday (via the Financial Post).

During the first three months of 2017, Rogers added 60,000 new postpaid wireless subscribers, 46,000 more than the same period a year ago, and the most in a first quarter since 2009. Revenue increased 3%, largely driven by wireless service revenue, which was up 7% for the first quarter.

As of the end of March, Rogers has 8.61 million postpaid subscribers, up from 8.28 million a year previously. Postpaid average revenue per account (ARPA) reached $119.61 for the quarter, according to Rogers’ report.

Analysts, however, are focusing on the carrier’s IPTV strategy, as Rogers took a $484 million hit during the last quarter when it abandoned a five-year attempt to build its own IPTV product. That gave Bell an advantage, but Rogers is apparently betting on its internet infrastructure: Rogers is able to offer gigabit internet speeds to 4 million homes, while Bell needs to invest in expensive fibre to achieve those speeds.

Rogers has announced that it will use Comcast’s X1 platform to launch its IPTV offering in the first quarter of next year.

Until then, the incoming CEO, former Telus chief executive Joe Natale, starts his reign today, as Rogers has managed to negotiate a deal with Telus for him to start earlier than a non-compete contract would originally have allowed.