Sprint announced quarterly results which were said to include “significant milestones”, although in one high-profile metric – total connections – it has now been usurped by T-Mobile US.
The results even saw the recovering company upping its 2015 Adjusted EBITDA guidance to $7.2 billion-$7.6 billion, from $6.5 billion to $6.9 billion. This resulted from “improved customer trends, a greater reduction in operating expenses, and a higher mix of sales on device financing options”.
“Going forward, we are confident in our plan to leverage our unique spectrum assets to make our network a competitive advantage, aggressively reduce operating costs, and utilise our business relationships and assets to fund our turnaround,” said Marcelo Claure, Sprint’s CEO.
It ended the period with 57.7 million subscribers, putting it behind T-Mobile US’ 58.9 million. The company added 675,000 Sprint Platform customers during the period, compared with a 220,000 loss a year ago, as growth in postpaid and wholesale & affiliate customers was partially offset by a prepaid customer decline.
Claure noted achievements in the quarter including Sprint’s lowest-ever churn and postpaid phone net additions in both May and June (continuing past the quarter end, into July).
The company reported a quarterly net loss of $20 million, compared with a profit of $23 million in the prior-year period, on revenue of $8.03 billion, down from $8.79 billion. Service revenue of $7.04 billion was down from $7.68 billion.
It noted that service revenue had been impacted by customer shifts to separate rate plans and device financing, and postpaid customer losses. Equipment revenue was impacted by a shift from instalment billing sales, which recognise more revenue at the point of sale, to leasing sales, which recognise revenue over time.
Adjusted EBITDA of $2.08 billion was up from $1.83 billion, as expense reductions more than offset the decline in operating revenue. The company’s net loss was attributed to higher interest expenses.
Sprint also announced a reshuffle of its senior management, across finance and technology divisions.
Incumbent CFO, Joseph Euteneuer, is leaving the company “following an orderly transition of responsibilities”, to be replaced by Tarek Robbiati, who was most recently MD and CEO of Australian consumer finance company FlexiGroup.
Robbiati has also held senior positions at Telstra, CSL and Orange.
Joining as chief operating officer (Technology) is Gunther Ottendorfer, who has previously served as CTO and board member of Telekom Austria Group and MD of Optus Singtel. John Saw, chief network officer, has been appointed CTO, under Ottendorfer.
“As I begin my second year here at Sprint, I feel very good about the team we have put together to pursue the great opportunities ahead,” Claure said.