Increased subscriber revenues and new digital services including Foot+ on XBox, Canal+ on iPhone, and Le Cube hybrid receiver helped Canal+ Group grow both revenues and subscribers during 2008.
Revenues grew by 1.6% at constant currency to €4,553 million as Canal+ France’s subscriber base in metropolitan France, French overseas territories and Africa grew by 200,000 over the year to close 2009 with 10.8 million subscribers. The Canal+ Group, which includes its international interests, added 500,000 subscribers to close the year on 12.5 million.
A key factor has been the conversion to digital of analogue subscribers receiving the French over-the-air service. This meant that by the year-end, 93% of the total subscriber base was receiving a digital signal, compared to 80% at its start. A total of 490,000 subscribers have been transferred to digital since the start of 2009.
Those who have already made the decision to go digital are now more likely to stay connected, the churn rate having fallen to 12.3% in 2009, compared to the 2008 figure of 13%. ARPU has also increased by €1 to €44.7 on the back of increased subscriber fees.
Canal+ Group EBITA grew by 14.8% to reach €652 million in 2009, compared to €568 million in 2008. Canal+ France EBITA also increased as the full effect of the TPS merger began to be felt.
However, Polish operations were hit by an unfavourable exchange rate, and marketing expenditure in the competitive satellite market. Canal+ Poland added 160,000 new subscribers during the year.