Sky reports 15 per cent increase in ad sales in new finance report

Sky has produced a strong set of financial results including an uplift in ad sales by 15 per cent in the nine months ending 31 March.

Sky Media, the company's advertising sales house, took £204 million in revenue, reflecting the growth in penetration and viewing share for Sky's satellite homes. Sky's interactive division, Sky Active, increased its revenues by 12 per cent, driven by an increase in the number of advertisers using interactive TV campaigns.

Sky increased the number of digital satellite subscribers by 150,000 in the last quarter and claims that it will comfortably achieve its target of seven million subscribers by the end of the calendar year. Sky's personal video recording system, Sky+, experienced a 21 per cent growth in subscribers, although the number of customers remains at 79,000.

The churn rate (or number of subscribers cancelling their subscriptions) fell to 9.3 per cent despite an increase in subscription rates. Average revenue per user continued to grow, reaching £364 - an increase of 7 per cent over the same quarter last year.

These results indicate a profit before tax, goodwill and exceptional items of £165 million.

Tony Ball, the chief executive of BSkyB, said: "We are reporting another strong set of results today. In what is normally a quiet period we have delivered healthy subscriber growth and an operating profit that has doubled year on year, thanks to strong revenue growth and sustained cost control. We remain on track to hit all of our targets."