Slow start for Eircom's digital TV service
Eircom's long-awaited eVision TV service is thought to have attracted fewer than 3,000 customers since its launch in Mid October, according to industry sources.
The digital television offer was trialled with a "couple of hundred" homes before being launched over six weeks ago. The service is part of Eircom's "quadplay" strategy, in which it offers customers a bundle of landline, broadband, mobile and television. Eircom was first out of the traps with its "quadplay" offer, with rivals UPC and Sky yet to offer mobile to their customers.
Eircom told the Sunday Independent that it was "comfortable" with the performance of eVision since its launch. "We are happy with its performance and we'll see how it goes when we have the full weight of advertising behind it."
Eircom is preparing a marketing and advertising blitz to push its "quadplay" product early in the new year. The company said it would not divulge its customer numbers as it was an "internal" matter.
The company, headed by Herb Hribar, said that it had planned to build up eVision numbers from its existing customer base following on from what it described as a "soft launch". Customer feedback has been "positive" according to the company. Homes wishing to sign up for eVision must be part of Eircom's 600,000 strong fibre network. Eircom is planning to increase the numbers on its fibre network to over one million next year as part of its expansion plans.
"It'd be wrong to suggest that there is internal concern over where we are at the moment," a spokesman added.
When eVision was launched last October, the service was priced at just €10 a month for its most basic "essential" service which has 34 stations. Both UPC and Sky have reacted to the new market entrant by tailoring their offers as an aggressive price war rages.
Eircom, which is owned by a group of private equity and hedge funds headed by Blackstone, is bulking up ahead of a possible sale or IPO in coming years.