Telewest goes for high street cable sales

Telewest, the cable company that made its stock market debut in November, is to launch a drive into the high street this year, focusing sales on outlets including Granada stores.

Trials with retail selling - a departure from the normal direct sales route - have shown that fewer people subsequently leave the network. Alan Michels, chief executive, said: "You have got to improve the availability of the product."

Mr Michels was speaking as Telewest announced that net losses in 1994 had deepened to £65.1m from £36.6m the previous year. Revenues rose by 79 per cent to £72m. The results reflect continued heavy investment in expansion, with expenditure rising to £215m last year from £138m in 1993.

Telewest, the largest UK cable company, increased its workforce by about 90 per cent to 2,079 during the year and plans to employ a further 400 in 1995. The television subscriber base rose by 50 per cent to 179,096, but there was a flat uptake of customers compared with the homes able to access the service.