Bell Canada reports second quarter 2023 results

MONTRÉAL /CNW/ - BCE Inc. (TSX: BCE) (NYSE: BCE) today reported results for the second quarter (Q2) of 2023.

"Bell's Q2 results demonstrate that our consistent strong execution and delivering the compelling services that our customers want and value is a winning approach," said Mirko Bibic, President and CEO of BCE and Bell Canada.

"Over the past several years, we have been laser focused on building the best networks, investing in growing our fibre footprint and delivering ever-faster mobile and Internet speeds. Bell pure fibre was ranked the fastest Internet in Canada in the Ookla Speedtest Award report for Q1-Q2 2023, as well as the fastest Wi-Fi. We added 52,148 new net fibre customers in Q2, up 38.2% over last year, and our retail Internet net activations were up 10.2% to 24,934, our best Q2 result in 16 years. We surpassed a milestone of 10 million mobile phone subscribers, with service revenue up 4.4% on our highest Q2 postpaid net activations in 18 years. And we achieved these results against the backdrop of declining prices, demonstrating that our industry is delivering the highest quality services at decreasing prices, despite persistent inflation.

Despite the continuing advertising recession across North America, our leading content and digital-first media strategy continues to pay off with Bell Media digital revenue up 20% over last year, and now comprising 33% of total Bell Media revenue. "


1 Adjusted EBITDA is a total of segments measure, adjusted net earnings and free cash flow are non-GAAP financial measures and adjusted EPS is a non-GAAP ratio. Refer to the Non-GAAP and Other Financial Measures section in this news release for more information on these measures.

Refer to the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) section in this news release for more information on subscriber (or customer) units.

Baseline broadband buildout program based on planned coverage footprint of approximately 10 million residential and business locations.

4 Digital revenues are comprised of advertising revenue from digital platforms including web sites, mobile apps, connected TV apps and out-of-home (OOH) digital assets/platforms, as well as advertising procured through Bell digital buying platforms and subscription revenue from direct-to-consumer services and Video on Demand services.


Award-winning network, new Virgin Plus plans
Bell became Canada's most awarded Internet service provider5 after its pure fibre Internet was named the fastest Internet and fastest Wi-Fi in the Ookla Q1-Q2 2023 Speedtest Awards (opens in new window)  report.6 In addition, Bell MTS was recognized as Employees' Choice: Canada's Top Broadband ISP for Work (opens in new window)  in PCMag's first survey of Internet providers at work in Canada.7 Virgin Plus (opens in new window)  launched new unlimited nationwide and 5G wireless plans, along with a new brand campaign and updated Member benefits.

Accelerate cloud strategy for Canadian businesses
Bell completed the acquisition of FX Innovation (opens in new window) , a Montréal-based IT services and consulting company providing business clients with cloud-focused managed and professional services and workflow automation solutions. This acquisition delivers leading-edge technology solutions for Canadian businesses and seeks to position Bell as a tech services leader.

Delivering the most compelling content
TSN, RDS, CTV and Noovo delivered extensive coverage of the Formula 1 Canadian Grand Prix (opens in new window) , which was Canada's most-watched F1 race on record, attracting an average audience of 1.34 million viewers. The final round of the RBC Canadian Open attracted the highest audience on record for a Canadian Open final on TSN, with a 41% increase compared to the 2022 final round. A total of approximately 2.35 million Canadians tuned in to watch the final. Bell Media announced its 2023 – 2024 original content slate as part of Upfront 23 and Futur 23 (opens in new window) . Total English and French-language original programming includes 96 titles and 1,037 hours of content. CTV (opens in new window)  celebrated 22 consecutive years as Canada's most-watched network. On Crave, Billionaire Murders (opens in new window)  was the top Canadian series launch ever for first week streams and Survivor Québec (opens in new window)  was the most-watched program of the spring on Noovo. The finale was the week's most watched show on French Québec television and the most watched episode on Noovo since the network's debut in 2020. Crave expanded its direct-to-consumer subscription offering with the launch of ad-supported tiers (opens in new window) . Bell Media also unveiled new advertising solutions (opens in new window)  accessible directly through the Bell Marketing Platform, which includes Addressable TV, new upgrades to its Strategic Audience Management (SAM) tool, expanded inventory on its Bell demand-side platform (DSP) including Addressable Audio, and new attribution capabilities.

Bell for Better: Better World, Better Communities, Better Workplace
Bell entered into its first Sustainability-Linked Derivatives (opens in new window) , designed to align financing costs with our performance on environmental, social and governance (ESG) targets. Continuing to support youth mental health, Bell Let's Talk built on Bell's longstanding partnership with The Montréal Children's Hospital Foundation (opens in new window)  with a $500,000 donation toward increasing therapy resources available through the hospital's Children's Eating Disorders program. Bell team members also raised nearly $300,000 for the annual Walk So Kids Can Talk (opens in new window)  in support of Kids Help Phone and its Feel Out Loud movement (opens in new window)  to expand access to its e-mental health service across Canada. Bell's commitment to ESG standards through sustainable investments and diversity and equity initiatives ensured another strong ranking on the Corporate Knights Best 50 Corporate Citizens (opens in new window)  list.8

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