Seasonality and rate increases helped push subscriber losses slightly above the average in the second quarter for Suddenlink Communications, as the St. Louis-based cable operator continues to move forward with its $9.1 billion merger with European telecom giant Altice.
Suddenlink lost 29,400 basic video customers in the second quarter, about 10,000 more than the 19,000 it lost in the same period last year and 6,000 more than the 23,000 in losses it averaged between 2009 and 2013. Suddenlink said seasonality – as students leave school and customers leave home for their summer residences – as well as an early year rate adjustment led to the difference. Suddenlink normally imposes rate increases in the fourth quarter, but this year began implementing them in the first and second quarter, completing them in May.
High-speed data customers declined by 2,800 in the period and phone customer rose by 500. Total customer relationships rose 2.4% to 1.4 million in the past 12 months and non-video residential customers grew 31.2% in the past 12 months to 421,000.
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