Back to top

Image: Bigstock

Liberty Global (LBTYA) Incurs Loss in Q4, Revenues Up Y/Y

Read MoreHide Full Article

Liberty Global's (LBTYA - Free Report) fourth-quarter 2020 net loss was $1 billion compared with the year-ago quarter’s loss of $1.35 billion.

Revenues increased 14.9% year over year to $3.43 billion. However, on a rebased basis, revenues dipped 0.5% from the year-ago quarter.

Liberty Global gained 55,900 customer relationships in the reported quarter against a loss of 25,500 in the year-ago quarter.

Fixed-mobile convergence penetration increased to 28% in the fourth quarter up from 23% in the year-ago quarter.

Liberty Global PLC Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

 

Liberty Global PLC Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Liberty Global PLC price-consensus-eps-surprise-chart | Liberty Global PLC Quote

Top-Line Details

Average revenue per unit (“ARPU”) per cable customer relationship increased 2.5% to $61.74. On a rebased basis, the figure declined 2.5%.

Mobile ARPU (including interconnect revenues), on a reported basis, increased 25.8% to $20.31. On a rebased basis, the figure decreased 4.5%.

Further, mobile ARPU (excluding interconnect revenues), on a reported basis, grew 26.3% to $17.65. On a rebased basis, the figure was down 3.1%.

In the United Kingdom/Ireland, Virgin Media gained 41,700 customer relationships against a loss of 9,400 in the year-ago quarter. The company benefited from strong demand for broadband bundles.

The U.K./Ireland revenues, on a reported basis, climbed 3% year over year to $1.77 billion. On a rebased basis, the same was flat year over year.

In Belgium, Telenet lost 1,000 customer relationships compared with loss of 6,900 in the year-ago quarter.

Belgium revenues, on a reported basis, increased 6.4% year over year to $793.7 million. On a rebased basis, revenues fell 0.9%.

In Switzerland, Liberty Global lost 5,800 customer relationships compared with the loss of 22,700 in the year-ago quarter. Sunrise added 6,000 customers in the periodpost acquisition.

Switzerland revenues, on a reported basis, surged 103.4% year over year to $642.9 million. On a rebased basis, revenues decreased 2.6%.

Continuing CEE (Poland and Slovakia) gained 21,000 customer relationships compared with 13,500K in the year-ago quarter, driven by growth in new build areas.

Continuing CEE revenues, on a reported basis, increased 6.2% to $127.4 million. On a rebased basis, the top line increased 3%.

Revenues from the Dutch joint venture increased 4.7% year over year on a rebased basis.

Liberty Global built 154,000 new premises in the reported quarter including 115,000 in the U.K. & Ireland.

Operating Details

Adjusted EBITDA increased 5.8% year over year to $1.35 billion in the fourth quarter. On a rebased basis, EBITDA decreased 6.2%.

U.K./Ireland EBITDA, on a rebased basis, decreased 11.1% year over year. Switzerland EBITDA, on a rebased basis, was down 7.9% from the year-ago quarter.

Belgium EBITDA, on a rebased basis, decreased 1.1% year over year. However, CEE EBITDA, on a rebased basis, increased 1.2% year over year.

Operating income was $648.2 million in the reported quarter compared with $282.5 million in the year-ago quarter.

Balance Sheet & Cash Flow

As of Dec 31, 2020, Liberty Global had $6.2 billion of cash, investments under SMAs and unused borrowing capacity.

Total principal amount of debt and finance leases were $31.3 billion for continuing operations. Moreover, the average debt tenor is seven years, with approximately 84% not due until 2026 or thereafter.

As of Dec 31, 2020, Liberty Global’s adjusted gross and net leverage ratios were 5.8X and 5.1X, respectively.

Cash provided by operating activities was $1.49 billion, unchanged year over year.

Moreover, adjusted free cash flow was $528.1 million in the fourth quarter compared with $774.7 million in the year-ago quarter and free cash outflow of $455.7 million in the previous quarter.

The company bought back $1 billion of shares under its repurchase program during 2020.

Joint Venture & Acquisition Details

Liberty Global stated that the joint venture with Telefonica’s O2 is on track and is expected to close in mid-2021.

Moreover, Liberty Global completed the acquisition of Sunrise Communications in mid-November.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Liberty Global currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Roku (ROKU - Free Report) , TEGNA (TGNA - Free Report) and fuboTV (FUBO - Free Report) are some better-ranked stocks in the broader consumer & discretionary sector. All the three stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Roku, TEGNA and fuboTV are set to report quarterly results on Feb 18, Mar 1 and Mar 2, respectively.

The Hottest Tech Mega-Trend of All

Last year, it generated $24 billion in global revenues. By 2020, it's predicted to blast through the roof to $77.6 billion. Famed investor Mark Cuban says it will produce "the world's first trillionaires," but that should still leave plenty of money for regular investors who make the right trades early.

See Zacks' 3 Best Stocks to Play This Trend >>


Go Deeper With Exclusive Zacks Research


Normally $25 each - click below to receive one report FREE:


Liberty Global PLC (LBTYA) - free report >>

TEGNA Inc. (TGNA) - free report >>

Roku, Inc. (ROKU) - free report >>

fuboTV Inc. (FUBO) - free report >>