Comcast steering clear of usage based pricing, eyes SMB growth

Comcast CFO Mike Angelakis said the broadband provider has no plans for usage based pricing even as some companies---especially in wireless---tinker with the concept.

Comcast CFO Mike Angelakis said the broadband provider has no plans for usage based pricing even as some companies---especially in wireless---tinker with the concept.

Speaking at a Barclays Capital investment conference on Tuesday, Angelakis said "first of all to be clear, we're not adopting it." Usage based pricing is something Comcast is watching closely, but the company "is very comfortable with our structure."

Angelakis said:

Our goal is to really capture share and increase ARPU. And I think that -- and make sure that we have the best product that's going in the house or in the business. And I think that we absolutely do, whether it's in the business or in the house. So we're pretty comfortable with the model. We've deployed the instrumentation that people need to sort of gauge how much they're using, and if we ever wanted to go to usage-based billing or consumption-based billing, we could possibly do that. I don't know why we would disrupt a pretty good run we're having right now. We feel really good about our capacity and our capability to continue to manage additional bandwidth needs.

Meanwhile, Comcast is focusing on chasing small and mid-sized business customers. For companies with fewer than 20 employees, Comcast is a connectivity option. The business unit focused on small businesses has an annual revenue run rate of $1.6 billion and a market share of 10 percent to 12 percent.

For mid-sized businesses, Comcast is just getting started. Regarding mid-sized businesses, Angelakis said:

We have metro Ethernet in 20 of our largest markets. We have very little revenue, but a massive market to go after. And again, I think we have a real product advantage and we have a real pricing advantage compared to our competitors. So we're going to be boots on the street, and we're going to be really focused on how we execute with regards to that particular product. That is probably a $10 billion to $15 billion opportunity in terms of market size for us. And again, we have pretty negligible revenues right now. And our goal is to build those revenues this year and next year and year after, similar to how we have executed on the small part of Business Services, which I think is doing just great, growing at 40%, 45%, 50% top line accretive margins, free cash flow positive.