Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信) yesterday said that its multimedia-on-demand (MOD) subscribers increased to 1.8 million as of last month, thanks to the FIFA World Cup fever.
That should help the nation’s largest telecom operator to reach its break-even point of 2 million subscribers by the end of this year, the company said in a statement.
Chunghwa Telecom has been struggling to turn a profit from its pay TV business due to snail-paced growth in the number of subscribers, given a lack of appealing content and fierce competition from local cable system operators.
The MOD business has yet to reach economies of scale since its launch 14 years ago.
Its subscriber numbers have surged by 100,000 since the company announced in March that it would broadcast all 64 games of the World Cup, the company said.
In particular, MOD sign-ups increased by 20,000, or 23 percent, after the FIFA World Cup entered the final 16, it said.
MOD will become one of the [company’s] mainstream new media operations after it crosses the threshold of 2 million subscribers,” chairman David Cheng (鄭優) said in the statement.
Since taking over the reins of the firm in December 2016, Cheng has made it a priority to turn around the money-losing pay TV business and set a target of achieving the goal in two years.
Separately, the telecom raised NT$300.07 million (US$9.83 million) from selling 350,000 shares of Chunghwa Precision Test Technology Co (CHPT, 中華精測), it said in a filing with the Taiwan Stock Exchange yesterday.
The company still holds 36 percent of CHPT after the transaction.
CHPT is the nation’s largest provider of probe card testing services, which counts Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (台積電) and Intel Corp among its major clients.
Chunghwa Telecom said it would use the proceeds to invest in other businesses.
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