Sprint Makes Progress

Long-ailing Sprint seems to be making operational progress, growing operating income, adding postpaid accounts and reducing churn.

Unaudited Sprint preliminary financial results for its second fiscal quarter of 2016 (three months ended September 30, 2016) show progress.

Total net operating revenues of $8.25 billion grew three percent year-over-year and wireless net operating revenues of $7.85 billion grew nearly five percent year-over-year.

Sprint said it lost $142 million in the third quarter, compared with a loss of $585 million in the same months of 2015. Operations profited by $622 million, though the operating profit total ignores some costs such as debt repayments or interest payments

The company added 740,000 subscribers during July, August and September, including 344,000 in its higher-revenue customer counts. Sprint reduced postpaid churn, which dipped from 1.54 percent last year to 1.52 percent this year. The carrier noted postpaid phone churn for the latest quarter hit a company record low of 1.37 percent.

With T-Mobile US driving its financial and operating results and taking market share in the U.S. mobile market, and Sprint doing better, one has to wonder if AT&T and Verizon will show a bit of weakness in their next quarterly reporting.

Beyond that, there are the coming market entries of Comcast and Charter Communications, as well as the unknown strategy Dish Network will employ, either entering the mobile market or selling its spectrum assets.

One way or the other, further turbulence lies ahead.


Top US Wireless Carrier Metrics Q2 2016 (ranking by subscribers, retail + wholesale)
Rank by             Subscribers
Carrier
Subscribers (millions)
Net Adds (millions)
Postpaid Smartphone Net Adds (mil)
1
Verizo n Wireless
142.754
1.285
0.336
2
AT&T
131.805
1.361
0.250
3
T-Mobile USA
67.384
1.881
0.877
4
Sprint
58.446
-0.360
0.259


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