Sky Deutschland reported strong growth in its second quarter, with viewer numbers boosted by the operator’s sport line-up and coverage of domestic and international football.
Sky recorded increased operating momentum with total customers up 47,900 to 3.453 million in the quarter, with CEO Brian Sullivan commenting that “with Bundesliga exclusivity, an unrivalled sport offering, great new channels, innovative products and a significantly expanded distribution position, we have set the stage for the second half of this year and beyond.”
The firm said that the 50th anniversary Bundesliga season provided a “major boost to viewer numbers for Sky’s coverage” with its Saturday coverage reaching a peak audience share of 26.2% among male viewers aged between 14 and 49 years with up to 1.48 million viewers tuning in for a single matchday during the season
This year’s UEFA Champions League, which had an all-German final of Bayern Munich against Borussia Dortmund, was also “the most successful ever on Sky.” The four semi-finals and the final resulted in an 80% year-on-year increase in average rating, delivering 5.52 million total viewers in subscriber households, according to Sky.
Elsewhere, Sky added 83,600 premium HD customers in the quarter to reach 1.697 million, meaning that 49.1% of Sky subscribers now take Sky premium HD.
This followed the recent launch of Sport1 US HD, the exclusive addition of MGM HD, and Eurosport 2 HD, as well as the introduction earlier this year of Syfy HD, 13th Street HD and E! Entertainment HD. Sky said it now offers 69 high definition channels and promised “more to come” – including Universal Channel HD, which is due to go live in September.
Sky said that its Sky+ DVR service also experienced strong demand, with customers growing by 105,800 in the quarter to 1.17 million and 33.9% of Sky subscribers now using the Sky+free video-on-demand service, Sky Anytime.
Over-the-top service Sky Go, which lets Sky customers in Germany and Austria access content from a range of devices also performed well. In the quarter Sky Go recorded almost 16.7 million customer logins, compared to 6.9 million during Q2 2012, with HBO series Game of Thrones streamed more than one million times since April 2013 alone.
Overall Sky Deutschland reported revenues of €375.4m, up 15% year-on-year, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation was €36.8 million, up 60% year-on-year.