Liberty Global cuts 4Q loss on subscriber growth

Liberty Global narrows 4th-qtr loss to $1.27 per share as subscriber base grows

Associated Press

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) -- Liberty Global Inc., the international cable TV and Internet provider controlled by media mogul John Malone, said Thursday its fourth-quarter loss narrowed, helped by subscriber growth around the world.

Liberty posted a loss of $331.3 million, or $1.27 per share, compared with a loss of $435 million, or $1.58 per share, in the same quarter the year before.

Revenue increased 14 percent to $2.73 billion from $2.4 billion, boosted by contributions from acquisitions.

Analysts on average expected a profit, adjusted to exclude one-time items, of 13 cents per share on $2.66 billion in revenue, according to FactSet. Liberty Global did not provide an adjusted earnings-per-share figure.

The company added 465,000 subscribers during the recent quarter, representing a 22 percent increase from the same quarter in 2011, helped by acquisitions and strong consumer demand for bundles that include TV, phone and Internet services.

Last week, Liberty Global announced plans to acquire U.K.-based Virgin Media Inc. for about $16 billion in cash and stock.

For the full year, Liberty earned $322.8 million, or $1.21 per share, compared with a loss of $772.7 million, or $2.93 per share, in 2011. Revenue increased to $10.31 billion from $9.51 billion.

Liberty shares fell $1.05, or 1.6 percent to $65.99 in afternoon trading.

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