Sprint Posts Wider-Than-Expected Loss

Yet the company added postpaid mobile phone customers in the third quarter, the first time it has done that in two years.
Katie Kuehner-HebertNovember 3, 2015
Sprint Posts Wider-Than-Expected Loss

While Sprint’s loss last quarter was wider than expected, the number four U.S. wireless carrier was at least able finally to stem defections of core postpaid phone customers.

Sprint on Tuesday posted a net loss of $585 million, or 15 cents per share, on revenue of $7.98 billion, for its second fiscal quarter ended Sept. 30. The Overland Park, Kansas-based company had been expected to post a per-share loss of 9 cents, while revenue also trailed some analysts’ expectations, re/code reported.

“This quarter marked an inflection point in our turnaround journey, as we achieved positive postpaid phone net additions for the first time in over two years,” Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure said in a press release.

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The company gained 1.1 million total customers, including 237,000 postpaid phone customers, though BTIG analyst Walt Piecyk told re/code that 200,000 of those came from directly converting existing prepaid customers.

Sprint also said that adjusted earnings for its full fiscal year, which runs through next March, will be at the low end of its previous projections.

The company is trying to grow its network while cutting $2 billion in annual costs, according to re/code.

“This reduction will come from every area of the business with no stone unturned,” Claure said on a conference call with analysts, adding that there will be some one-time costs associated with making the operating expense reductions. Those costs could be around $1 billion to $1.2 billion, Sprint CFO Tarek Robbiati said later on the earnings call.

A day before Sprint’s earnings release, news circulated of Sprint’s cutting back on employee perks, including free snacks at its headquarters.