Sky's subscriber rate in Latin america up 8% in second quarter

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MIAMI--Despite the region's economic problems, Sky, a leading satellite TV service in Latin America, reached 750,000 subscribers by the second quarter of this year, an 8% increase over the previousquarter.

The 24-hour digital DTH TV's standalone platforms are NetSat in Brazil, Innova in Mexico and Sky Multi-Country Partners in the rest of the region.

Sky's highest subscriber growth, 18%, was in Colombia and Chile, mainly due to enhanced movie programming and studio agreements with Sony, Dreamworks, Universal and Twentieth Century Fox allowing Sky to offer the latest Hollywood releases.

Reflecting Mexico's positive economic outlook, Innova posted a healthy 12% subscriber growth in that country. Sky attributed the increase to an effective distribution network, a reduction in the entry price and better programming.

Brazil's economic woes earlier this year account for the more modest 5% subscriber growth posted by NetSat. The less aggressive growth was partly the result of a 15% hike in the price of programming aimed at restoring subscriber revenues following currency devaluation early in the year.

Sky is backed by Organizacoes Globo, Mexico's Grupo Televisa SA, News Corp. Ltd. and Liberty Media International.

Copyright August 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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