Altice USA reported that total unique residential customer relationships grew +1.8% year over year during its second quarter 2020. That number drops to growth of 1.4% when adjusted to exclude customers greater than 90 days delinquent due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Like other service providers, Altice participated in the FCC’s Keep Americans Connect Pledge.
Altice reported its best-ever residential broadband net additions of 70,400 in Q2 2020 compared to 13,000 in Q2 2019. When adjusted for customers who signed up as part of the company’s pandemic-related free offers, residential broadband net additions would have been 52,600 in the quarter, which still represents the best-ever quarterly broadband performance for Altice USA.
The company’s business services revenue also grew during the quarter, up 2.2% year over year. “Similar to the residential business, SMBs have seen an increase in demand for broadband speed upgrades, and enterprise customers are upgrading service to support remote work with managed services like secured internet and conferencing solutions,” stated Altice USA in its earnings announcement.
The company felt confident enough to reinstate its guidance for the full-year, predicting growth in revenue, excluding mobile. It also plans to hit its target of $1.7 billion share repurchases during 2020.
During the quarter Altice USA introduced its triple-play fiber offering, delivering symmetrical broadband speeds up to 1 Gbps as well as video and voice services over its all-IP fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network. At the end of Q2, Altice USA covered approximately 900,000 homes with FTTH technology available for service.
Also during Q2, Altice announced the sale of its Lightpath fiber business that serves the New York metro area. Altice reached an agreement with Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners for the sale of a 49.99% stake in Lightpath in a deal with an implied enterprise value of $3.2 billion.
Overall, Altice had a good quarter, reporting total revenue of $2.47 billion, growing 1.0% year over year, driven by broadband revenue growth of 14.2% year over year. Net income was $111 million for Q2, or $0.19 per share, compared to a net income of $86 million, or $0.13 per share in Q2 2019.
Aside from its financials, the company reported that it saw an increase of 59% year over year in average data usage per customer to approximately 440 GB per month (approximately 550 GB per month for broadband-only customers). The average broadband speeds taken by Altice USA’s customer base has now increased nearly threefold in the past three years to 242 Mbps at the end of Q2 2020.
The company said approximately two-thirds of its internet customers remain on plans delivering 200 Mbps or less, representing a sizable opportunity to continue to upgrade speeds. As one of the main drivers of increased data usage, Optimum video streaming increased 46% year-over-year.