Pay-TV giant BSkyB reports 7% increase in net profits

British pay-TV firm BSkyB said Thursday that net profits rose seven percent in the first nine months of the group's financial year on the back of rising subscriber revenues, and despite the difficult economic climate.

Earnings after taxation increased to £736 million ($1.15 billion, 868 million euros) in the nine months to the end of March, compared with £689 million in the same part of its previous fiscal year.

Group revenues advanced six percent to £5.381 billion.

BSkyB, which is 39-percent owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp, gained a net 70,000 retail subscribers in the three months to March, giving it a total of 10.8 million customers.

The pay-tv company added that it would create 550 new jobs to meet keen demand for the group's product that include English Premier League football and blockbuster movies, and also Internet and telephone services.

The jobs will be created over the next 12 months in BSkyB's sales and customer services departments.

"We have had a good third quarter and our multi-product strategy is delivering strong results," said chief executive Jeremy Darroch in the statement.

"Increased take-up across our product set led to another improvement in financial performance with growth in revenues and profits accelerating in the third quarter."

Back in 2011, Murdoch's News Corp. scrapped a bid to win full control of BSkyB following a phone-hacking scandal which forced it to close British Sunday tabloid newspaper News of the World.