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Sky Perfect Communications Inc., operator of satellite broadcaster Sky PerfecTV, said Thursday its group net losses quadrupled in the first half.

The firm attributed the results to the cost of acquiring the rights to the World Cup soccer finals and related program production expenses.

Net losses soared to 18.59 billion yen in the six-month period through Sept. 30, having stood at 4.64 billion yen in the first half of the 2001 business year, according to the broadcaster.

Sky Perfect is listed on the Mothers startup section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

Its operating losses for the period more than quadrupled to 18.12 billion yen.

Pretax losses meanwhile stood at 18.57 billion yen, compared with losses of 4.81 billion yen logged in the first half of 2001.

Its operating revenues for the period rose 19.7 percent to 34.53 billion yen, however, following a surge in subscribers, it said.

The number of subscription contracts soared before and during the World Cup finals, in which the Japanese team captured the public’s attention, reaching the last 16.

The number of subscribers rose by a net 259,000 to 3.3 million as of Sept. 30, with the number of new contracts eclipsing that of contract cancellations, the firm said.

Mirroring the previous year, the company will not pay an interim stock dividend.

For the 2002 business year as a whole, Sky Perfect expects to generate group net losses of 24 billion yen, up from the previous year’s losses of 12.25 billion yen, and group pretax losses of 25 billion yen, up from 11.90 billion yen.

It expects to log projected operating revenues of 72 billion yen, up from 59.43 billion yen.

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