Freedom Mobile Guides Shaw’s Q1 Growth

Shaw Communications office

CBJ — Shaw Communications topped analyst estimates for profit and revenue in its fall first quarter, powered by its Freedom Mobile wireless business.

Since acquiring Wind Mobile — rebranded as Freedom Mobile — Calgary-based Shaw has spent heavily to improve the capabilities of its wireless network, which operates in the more populated regions of Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia.

Freedom’s average billing per subscriber was up 12% in the company’s opening quarter.  Wireless profit margin was 46%.

Shaw’s overall revenue for the opening quarter, ended November 30, was up 8.8% year-over-year, rising to $1.36 billion from $1.25 billion a year ago.

As of November 30 the company had nearly 1.47 million wireless subscribers — up 65,615 from the year-earlier quarter, but still a small fraction of what’s held by any of Canada’s three national carriers — Rogers, Bell and Telus.