* Cogeco Inc Q3 loss C$3.39/shr
* Q3 rev up 13.3 pct to C$375 mln
* Cogeco Cable unit Q3 loss C$3.74/shr
* Unit revenue up 7.4 pct at C$342.9 mln (Adds CEO comments, subscriber growth data in paragraphs 3-5,9,12)
July 7 (Reuters) - Media and telecom company Cogeco Inc and its cable arm Cogeco Cable posted a quarterly loss hurt by a charge the unit took to write off its investment in Portugal.
Cogeco took a charge of C$225.9 million to write off its investment in Cabovisao, which competes with state-owned Portugal Telecom and ZON Multimedia , as subscriber losses due to pricing wars there have shrunk profit margins.
The weak economy led to a fall in customer spending capacity, resulting in Cogeco Cable writing off its investment in its Portuguese subsidiary Cabovisao, said Louis Audet, Cogeco’s chief executive.
Cogeco Cable provides cable television, high-speed Internet and telephone services in Canada and Portugal.
Overall, the cable operation’s digital television customers grew 13 percent to 818,624. It added 47,310 telephone users and 34,411 high-speed Internet accounts.
The impairment charge cut the parent company’s net income by C$72.7 million in the third quarter, it said.
The cable arm posted a loss of C$182 million, or C$3.74 per share, compared with a profit of C$31.2 million, or 64 Canadian cents a share a year ago. Revenue rose 7.4 percent to C$342.9 million.
However, it raised its quarterly dividend to 20 Canadian cents per share from 17 Canadian cents per share.
Cogeco upped its 2011 revenue forecast in January after warning last July that growth this year would lag expectations.
Montreal-based Cogeco Inc made a net loss of C$56.7 million, or C$3.39 per share, compared with a profit of C$10.7 million, or 64 Canadian cents a year ago. Revenue rose 13 percent to C$375 million.
Analysts on average had expected Cogeco Inc to earn 75 Canadian cents a share on revenue of C$349.4 million, and Cogeco Cable to earn 72 Canadian cents a share on revenue of C$342.4 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Cogeco, in which rival Rogers Communications (RCIb.TO) has a sizeable stake, said it expects revenue of C$1,420 million for fiscal 2012 from its cable unit.
Shares of Cogeco Inc closed at C$42.90, while those of Cogeco Cable closed at C$44.84 on Wednesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Maneesha Tiwari in Bangalore; Editing by Don Sebastian and Gopakumar Warrier)