Shaw to focus on wireline network in coming year after transformative 2016: CEO

CALGARY – Shaw Communications will work to improve its network and launch a new generation of video services in the coming year, chief executive Brad Shaw said Wednesday in the cable company’s latest financial report.

The company, which began its 2017 financial year on Sept. 1, underwent major changes in 2016 — including the purchase of Wind Mobile and the sale of its media division.

“Fiscal 2016 marks a very deliberate pivot in the strategic direction for Shaw towards long-term, sustainable growth,” Shaw said in a statement.

“We have entered fiscal 2017 with the necessary foundation in place to execute on our strategic initiatives.”

He added that Shaw is reviewing results from in-home trials of new set-top boxes. It’s also working on infrastructure upgrades to integrate its coaxial cable, wi-fi and wireless networks.

The company (TSX:SJR.B) earned $154 million or 31 cents per diluted share in its fourth quarter, down from $276 million or 57 cents in the fourth quarter of its 2015 financial year when it was boosted by the sale of its wireless spectrum licenses.

Revenue for the quarter ended Aug. 31 totalled $1.31 billion, up 15.5 per cent from $1.13 billion a year ago.

For is full financial year, Shaw earned $1.24 billion or $2.51 per diluted share, boosted by the sale of its media division. The result compared with a profit of $880 million or $1.79 per diluted share in the previous year. Revenue totalled $4.88 billion for the 12 months ended Aug. 31, up 8.9 per cent from $4.49 billion.

In its outlook for its 2017 financial year, Shaw said it expected operating income between $2.125 billion and $2.175 billion, before restructuring and amortization, compared with $2.114 billion in fiscal 2016 and $2.037 billion in fiscal 2015.