Sky strikes new HBO deal as profits drop -11%

20 Apr 2017  |  Ellen Hammett 
Sky strikes new HBO deal as profits drop -11%

Profits at Sky dropped -11% in the nine months ending 31 March 2017, as the broadcaster absorbed "significantly higher" programming costs for the football.

As Sky prepares for a takeover by 21st Century Fox, profit fell from £1.142 billion to £1.013 billion - a result of the £494 million rise in costs to broadcast the live Premier League matches.

Overall group revenue rose by 5% to £9,641 million, while UK revenue increased by 4% to £6,410 million.

Despite the decline in profit, chief executive Jeremy Darroch said Sky is "on track" financially.

"We've made good progress on the growth plans that we laid out," Darroch said in a statement on Thursday (20 April).

"Looking forward, we enter the final quarter of our fiscal year in good shape. Despite the broader consumer environment remaining uncertain, we continue to deliver on our strategy and are on track for the full year."

Sky, which added 769,000 new customers over the year, has also announced a new $250 million (£195 million) multi-year production deal with US TV network HBO - with the first "high-end drama" broadcasts expected to hit screens in 2018.

A virtual reality experience in partnership with Sir David Attenborough and the Natural History Museum is also under way.

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