Verizon Upbeat on Outlook Despite Soft Q1 Results

Verizon (NYSE: VZ) is a big, slow-moving ship. Overall results for the first quarter of 2024 showed gains (and reduced losses) across its operating metrics but in small increments. Consolidated total operating revenue for the first quarter was $33.0 billion, up 0.2 percent year over year. Of that total, service and other revenue was $27.6 billion, up 1.7 percent YoY. Total Wireless service revenue was $19.5 billion, up 3.3 percent YoY, driven primarily by price increases implemented in recent quarters, higher premium price plan adoption, and growth in fixed wireless access connections. FWA service revenues for the quarter were $452 million, an increase of 77 percent from $255 million in 1Q23. Total FiOS revenue was $3.2 billion, up 0.3 percent year over year. 

Consolidated adjusted EBITDA for the first quarter was $12.1 billion, compared to $11.9 billion in the prior year period. Cash flow from operating activities for the first quarter was $7.1 billion compared to $8.3 billion in the prior year period driven by year-over-year pressures from higher interest expense primarily related to a reduction in capitalized interest. Free cash flow for the first quarter was $2.7 billion compared to $2.3 billion in the prior year period. 

Capital spending for the first quarter was $4.4 billion compared to $6.0 billion in the prior year period. Those figures include wireless, wireline and corporate capex. Wireless accounts for more than half of the total, according to Inside Towers Intelligence.

Verizon maintained its overall 2024 guidance of aggregate capex at $17.0-17.5 billion, total wireless service revenue growth of 2.0-3.5 percent and Adjusted EBITDA growth of 1.0-3.0 percent.

“We are back to business-as-usual level on capex spend, as we had promised,” comments Hans Vestberg, Verizon Chairman and CEO.  He says the company now has passed 250 million POPs covered with C-band, achieving that target almost a year ahead of plan, and characterized the pace and quality of its C-band build out as “spectacular.” 

Vestberg points out that in the first 76 markets where Verizon rolled out C-band, the company realized a higher premium mix and reduced churn. “Our strategy from the start was to build a network once, to meet the needs of the present, and to optimize it for the future,” he said.

Verizon ended the quarter with a league-leading 144.8 million retail postpaid and prepaid connections, up one percent YoY. Total postpaid net additions for 1Q24 were 253,000, down from 633,000 in the prior year period, as slower growth in tablets, wearables, and other connected devices more than offset improved phone net losses and solid performance in FWA. Total postpaid phone net losses for the first quarter were 68,000, an improvement from 127,000 net losses in the prior year period.

Vestberg also highlighted that Verizon is enabling artificial intelligence at scale for improved customer service and streamlining network operations, with several generative AI projects going live. Verizon’s AI strategy focuses on optimizing internal processes and operations, enhancing product experiences with AI capabilities, and establishing an AI-based revenue stream by commercializing the network’s low latency, high bandwidth, and mobile edge compute capabilities.

By John Celentano, Inside Towers Business Editor

Source link

Next Post

Key takeaways from AT&T's Q1 2024

Thu Apr 25 , 2024
‘These aren’t empty calorie additions’, says Stankey of AT&T’s wireless customer adds AT&T continued to emphasize its steady, 5G- and fiber-led strategy in its first quarter 2024 results, which beat Wall Street expectations on customer numbers and held the line on revenues. (More details here.) “We started the year with […]


COMING SOON! Signup for our newsletter, get hot news plus speical deals from us and our partners...

Best Omni-Directional on Market