CMET to Double Cable TV Subscribers in 2002

Friday, January 25, 2002

Chilean telecoms operator CMET expects to double its cable TV client base this year to 30,000 and aims to reach 50,000 subscribers by year-end 2003, CMET CEO Rafael Barra told BNamericas.

CMET is currently deploying a cable TV network in Chile's Region V, home to the major ports of San Antonio and Valparaiso. The project is fully financed, according to Barra.

The company is investing US$10mn this year to complete build out of its fiber optic network and traditional copper wire network. CMET plans to finish deployment of its telephony network in southern Chile in 2H02, at which time it will have total coverage of central/southern Chile from Valparaiso to the country's second largest city Concepcion.

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CMET currently has 115,000 fixed line clients, and this segment should see 10% growth in 2002, Barra said.

Barra does not expect repercussions from the Argentine crisis. "We're already financed for this year. Our external debt for purchases already made was totally paid off by December 31."

CMET is Chile's fifth largest fixed line operator. The company provides a variety of service through its local telephony, ISP, carrier, long distance and cable TV subsidiaries. Profit for 2001 will be 20% greater than the 2.1bn pesos (US$3.1mn) registered in 2000, according to Barra.