Cablevision to Increase Capex in 2012
Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) expects to goose capital expenditures as it looks to "accelerate" some 2013 projects into this year's budget, CEO Jim Dolan said Tuesday on the company's fourth-quarter earnings call.
Dolan didn't say how much of a capex boost to expect. Cablevision's total capex was $814.8 million in 2011, with the bulk covering scalable infrastructure ($217.06 million) and consumer premises equipment ($203.10 million).
The increased spending would focus on enhancements for video and Cablevision's other core products, Dolan said. As examples, he cited the faster deployment pace for Cablevision's network DVR and the launch, possibly by the third quarter, of a cloud-based interactive program guide for set-top boxes. Cablevision also plans to roll out a next-day installation program for new customers by the end of the first quarter. (See Cablevision Launches iPad App With 280+ Channels , Cablevision, TWC Expand Live TV Streaming Plans and Cablevision Plugs Its Network DVR.)
But the spending plan spooked some investors. Cablevision shares were down $1.60 (10 percent) to $14.04 in early afternoon trading Tuesday.
Cablevision lost 14,000 video customers in the quarter, slightly better than the 18,000 subscribers analysts were expecting the MSO to shed as it continues to grapple with Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) FiOS. It added 20,000 high-speed Internet customers and 31,000 voice customers in the quarter, which also beat Wall Street expectations.
Those numbers were aided by systems Cablevision acquired from Bresnan Communications. Those rural Midwestern cable properties, now called Optimum West, added 7,000 broadband subs, 8,000 voice customers, and 600 basic video subscribers. (See Cablevision Goes Country With Bresnan Buy.)
Cablevision posted net income of $60.5 million (22 cents per share) on revenues of $1.69 billion, up 7.6 percent. Non-GAAP net income, also 22 cents per share, missed Wall Street estimates by a penny, according to Thomson Reuters .
— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable