BT lays groundwork for sports channel launch

Picture: Getty
Picture: Getty
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Telecoms giant BT upped the pace of its fibre broadband roll-out in the final three months of last year, helping it accelerate customer growth by 50 per cent.

The group added 122,000 broadband accounts, up from 81,000 the previous quarter, and recruited extra engineers to speed up roll out and repairs of damage caused by the wet weather.

Its television service BT Vision also attracted a further 21,000 new customers, helping the group report a better-than-expected 7 per cent hike in pre-tax profits to £675 million for the quarter.

The company has broadcast rights for English Premier League football and Premiership rugby, and is launching two sports channels this summer. Formula 1 presenter Jake Humphrey and Olympic commentary sensation Clare Balding have already been signed up to front shows.

Chief executive Ian Livingston said the strong take-up of fast broadband gave the firm “an excellent platform for our push into TV and sport later this year”.