BT posted first quarter 2013 profits of £449m – down 16 percent on the same period last year – due to several changes in its financial structures and pension payments, but it added 197,000 new fibre customers in the period.
The addition of the new fibre customers takes the firm’s installed base of fibre users from its BT Retail division to 1.5 million.
Meanwhile the firm’s Openreach division – which sells on access to BT’s network to rival providers such as TalkTalk and Sky – added 189,000 new customers, taking the total user base on the network to 17.8 million premises.
Of these homes and business on the network 16 million can now access superfast fibre services and, in total, 265,000 took these services via the Openreach fibre network. A total of 1.7 million premises are now on fibre services.
Elsewhere, BT’s Global Services division, which operates selling services from network management to security in regions across the world, also performed well, with earnings before tax up six percent from £171m to £182m.
BT chief executive Ian Livingstone, who is due to step down later this year to take up a post in government, said the figures from across the business were heartening.
“BT continues to make good progress, delivering another quarter of solid growth in underlying profit before tax. This is despite the impact of regulation and the significant investments we are making for the future,” he said.
“Fibre remains at the heart of our plans and takeup is strong. Our SME business grew revenues by 1 percent, the best performance in more than four years, and our BT Global Services order intake was up almost 50 percent.”
The financials updates comes as BT faces tough criticism for its role in the rollout of broadband in rural areas with government funding, with rivals accusing it of hampering their efforts to help bring services to remote regions.
Campaigners want US authorities to break-up Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger into separate companies
The perception of the industry as "a white man in a hard hat" is limiting new applicants, says Hayaatun Sillem
Almost two years late - and just as AMD is readying 7nm Zen 2 for early 2019
Eye-wateringly expensive smart speakers take just six per cent market share, claims Strategy Analytics