Sprint shares up after cost cutting Quarter

Posted August 02, 2017

Major cost cutting efforts and some compelling promotions, including offering a year of free service, helped Sprint on Tuesday report its first quarterly profit in three years.

Meanwhile, Charter Communications Inc's shares shot to a record high yesterday on news that Japan's SoftBank Group Corp was considering an acquisition offer, even as Charter rejected the possibility of it being the acquirer in any merger with SoftBank's United States wireless carrier, Sprint Corp, Reuters reported.

Sprint has long sought a deal as it is unprofitable and the wireless market has gotten more competitive. And although its customer base has expanded under Chief Executive Marcelo Claure, growth has been driven by heavy discounting.

It marked the company's highest group of quarterly earnings for almost ten years, Sprint highlighted.

He said he was surprised Charter said it was not interested in acquiring Sprint given Sprint was never offered for Charter to buy.

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He did say he was surprised by some of the reports around a potential tie-up with Charter Communications Inc. The spokesman also turned down requests for comments on whether the negotiations would continue or whether a different price would perhaps regain Charter's interest in a possible buy out.

Sprint achieved almost $370 million of combined reductions in cost of services and SG&A expenses in the quarter, bringing the total reduction during the last nine quarters to almost $4 billion.

"Overall, our view is that Charter likely does not want to sell, but that SoftBank is one of the few companies that could put a bid in big enough to take control", analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co., led by Philip Cusick, said in a note to investors.

Sprint posted a fiscal first-quarter profit of $206 million, or 5 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier loss of $302 million, or 8 cents a share. Revenue dropped 4.5% to $8.16 billion. The company also reported net operating revenues of $8.2 billion, its fourth consecutive quarter of year-over-year growth, and 88,000 postpaid phone net additions, its eighth consecutive quarter of net additions.

Doing so would combine Charter's more than 23 million landline broadband customers, and more than 17.1 million pay TV subscribers, with a wireless company looking for assets to compete with vertically integrated giants Verizon and AT&T.