Time Warner Cable met every element of its ’07 outlook, greatly aided by operational improvements in acquired systems such as L.A. and Dallas. But even as continued growth in these important markets is expected to join with healthy HSD, VoIP and commercial services to power the MSO this year, bread-and-butter video remains besieged by competition and a sluggish economy. 50K net basic subs were lost in 4Q, 10-15K of which were economy-related, execs estimate, with much of the remainder going to satellite. In preparing for further wrangling for video market share, Time Warner Cable’s weapon of choice is HD. “We are not prepared to cede any ground in the HD battle,” said COO Landel Hobbs. To build on 4Q success in the high-def space—including the installation of 358K HD set tops and a tally of 253K net DVR adds (42% digital penetration)—the MSO, similar to Comcast, will focus largely on content and marketing. Deals are in place to carry 78 HD channels (25 RSNs) and 20 more are pending. Albany and San Antonio, among the MSO’s most advanced systems, currently offer 40. About half of these are delivered via switched digital tech, the buildout of which is complete in 9 systems and underway in another 9, with additional deployment expected this year in the “rest of the divisions that need it to compete,” said Hobbs. Time Warner Cable also plans this year to expand its suite of enhanced TV services to HD programming, order only CPE that is HD-capable, and “dramatically expand HD VOD,” said Hobbs. Lashing all these initiatives together will be improved marketing, which both Hobbs and CEO Glenn Britt admit requires marked improvement. “We have not told a great story there,” said Hobbs, saying future campaigns will be more aggressive and “pointed.” Meanwhile, record quarterly net VoIP adds (285K) and HSD market share gains (214K adds) versus AT&T and Verizon contributed to Sanford Bernstein analyst Craig Moffett‘s assertion that Time Warner Cable is “turning a corner.” The MSO’s 4Q revenue rose 7% over last year to $4.1bln, while net profit rose to $327mln from $266mln. Digital adds for the Q totaled 168K digital subs.

The Daily


Indy Show Hits Screens This Week

The fifteenth annual joint Independent Show is going to look a little different this year, but ACA Connects and NCTC have pivoted to bring a full virtual experience to their members.

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