Comcast Corporation (CMCSA - Analyst Report) – the largest cable MSO in the U.S., in an agreement announced plans to widen its Crossings TV coverage into three additional Comcast Xfinity TV markets namely Chicago, Seattle and San Francisco. The service will be available from the beginning of 2013.
Crossings TV is an Asia-based privately owned TV telecasting company, which serves the nation’s two largest cable MSOs Time Warner Cable (TWC - Analyst Report) and Comcast’s Xfinity TV customers. It broadcasts TV shows to Xfinity TV subscribers located in the California Central Valley, which includes Chinese, Vietnamese, Filipino, Hmong, South Asian and Russian language speakers in Sacramento, Stockton, Fresno and surrounding areas.
Comcast is continuously upgrading its service portfolio by adding new channels or offering innovative services to its customers. The company is also trying to diversify its revenue sources.
Comcast’s online TV service facility known as Xfinity TV is continuously gaining huge popularity as adoption of smartphones and tablets are on the rise. It also launched Xfinity Streampix, a subscription based on-demand video streaming service. Other service offerings include various home security services like the remote control of heating and cooling pattern of the home, Wi-Fi network expansion and so on.
We believe that such expansion of service offerings by Comcast will not only retain existing subscribers but also help the company to expand its subscriber growth going forward.
However, higher operating expenses coupled with stiff competition from rivals like Time Warner Cable and other satellite operators will hurt the company’s profitability going forward. Moreover, huge debt, higher operating expense and the continued loss of video subscribers will affect its bottom-line growth. We, thus, maintain our long-term Neutral recommendation on Comcast.
Currently Comcast has a Zacks #3 Rank, implying a short-term Hold rating on the stock.