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BskyB restores dividends on profits rise

British Sky Broadcasting has announced the restoration of dividend payouts on a rise in half-year profits.
The pay-TV broadcaster reported that total revenue had increased by 17% to £1766 million. Operating profit before goodwill and exceptional items had increased by 84% to £283 million. Profit after tax had risen to £130 million from £12 million.
Earnings per share before goodwill and exceptional items increase to 8.4 pence and BskyB announced the restoration of dividend with interim payment of 2.75 pence per share.
In the results for the six months ended 31 December 2003, BSkyB said the net direct to Home (DTH) subscriber base had increased by 193,000 to reach 7.2 million.
The company reported a healthy net operating cash inflow, up by 57% to £401 million.
The Chief Executive of British Sky Broadcasting Group, James Murdoch, said: "These results show a business that continues to improve. We enter our second half with good momentum, robust financial health and a full programme of work."

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