Sky’s core earnings rose by 14 per cent to £1.8billion in the nine months to 31 March, with the group’s chief executive lauding its ‘excellent’ set of results.
Like-for-like sales increased by 5 per cent to £10.1billion and over the last year the company has seen its customer base rise by 480,000 to 22.9million.
The FTSE 100 listed group’s statutory operating profits rose by 22 per cent to £857million, while cost levels ‘held flat’.
On the up: Sky’s core earnings rose by 14 per cent to £1.8billion in the nine months to 31 March
Sky’s share price is up 0.34 or 4.5p to 1,313p this morning. Commenting on the company’s share price performance, Richard Hunter, head of markets at interactive investor, said: ‘The shares have risen 34 per cent over the last year, as compared to a 2.4 per cent hike for the wider FTSE100, and 31 per cent in the last three months alone.
‘The strength and potential which Sky is displaying is an attractive proposition for bidders and investors alike, with the market consensus of the shares as a buy very likely to remain intact.’
The Competition and Markets Authority is currently reviewing 21st Century Fox’s bid to buy the 61 per cent stake in Sky it does not already own.
Sky has recently been boosted by the latest extension of its agreement to show Premier League games to 2022, in a deal which it says will enable it to ‘screen more games and at a lower cost.’
Jeremy Darroch, Sky’s chief executive, said: ‘It’s been a good quarter for Sky. We’ve delivered excellent financial results, with like-for-like revenues up 5 per cent and Established EBITDA up 14 per cent.
‘Against the back drop of a challenging consumer environment, this performance reflects the continual improvement in our broad set of products and services and our focus on providing great value every single day – something recognised by customers now taking over 62 million subscription products from us and our services reaching over 120 million people across Europe.’
Results: Like-for-like sales increased by 5 per cent to £10.1billion and over the last year
Interactive Investor’s Richard Hunter said: ‘In media terms, Sky is currently the belle of the ball, attracting overseas suitors aplenty. This update is another vindication of the interest being shown.
‘Even with its ambitious growth plans, Sky has managed to keep costs flat while posting a 22 per cent jump in operating profit.
‘The group has further added to its 23 million subscribers, whilst its partnerships with the likes of Netflix and Spotify both reflect the current trends and provide scope for greater expansion.
‘Sky continues to broaden its offering, with Sky Mobile and Sky Q already showing signs of promise. The success of the recent Premier League auction means that any concerns around escalating football rights costs can now be locked away until 2022.’
Looking ahead, Sky said its full year outlook remained ‘on track’, despite ‘challenging’ market conditions.