Shaw Communications profit falls 24 percent as video demand dips

Tue Apr 14, 2015 9:08am EDT
 
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(Reuters) - Canada's Shaw Communications Inc (SJRb.TO: Quote) reported a 24 percent drop in quarterly profit, hurt by a dip in the media and cable company's video subscriptions.

The company lost 8,254 satellite video subscribers across its consumer and business units as well as 35,967 cable video subscribers in the second quarter.

The company, which set up a subscription video-on-demand service called shomi with Rogers Communications (RCIb.TO: Quote) in November, faces intense competition from cheaper or free online alternatives such as Netflix (NFLX.O: Quote) and Google Inc's (GOOGL.O: Quote) YouTube.

Shaw said it lost C$16 million ($12.7 million) on the startup of shomi and C$38 million related to restructuring. The company's other expenses also rose 4.6 percent.

The company, which operates broadcaster Global and a range of specialty channels, will have to deal with a changing media landscape after the broadcast regulator said last month that distributors must offer all channels on an individual basis, known as a la carte or pick and pay programing.

Net income fell to C$168 million, or 34 Canadian cents per share, for the three months ended Feb. 28, from C$222 million, or 46 Canadian cents per share, a year earlier.

The company, which also provides landline Internet, phone and cable TV services, said revenue rose nearly 5 percent to C$1.34 billion, helped by the data center services business ViaWest Inc it acquired in September.

Up to Monday's close of C$28.92 close, the company's stock had risen 10.6 percent in the past 12 months.

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The Shaw logo is pictured on their Barlow Trail building, home to the annual Shaw AGM, in Calgary, Alberta January 14, 2014. REUTERS/Todd Korol