Broadband spurs SureWest’s fourth-quarter earnings
SureWest Communications  cited a renewed focus on delivering broadband services to customers and businesses as one of the main success stories of its fourth-quarter earnings report.
Roseville, Calif.-based SureWest saw its fourth-quarter broadband revenue grow by 13 percent compared with the same quarter in 2006. The company’s broadband subscriber base increased more than 11 percent during the quarter.
“In the face of a softening economy and increased competition, we have refined our focus on broadband and realized significant increases in marketable homes, subscribers and RGUs,” said SureWest President and CEO Steve Oldham. “With the acquisition of Everest Broadband, we will more than double our company’s broadband RGUs, making broadband expansion the primary driver of future growth.”
SureWest ended the fourth quarter with 102,632 total broadband RGUs. SureWest’s video revenue-generating units (RGUs) increased 7 percent year-over-year – to total 20,669 – while voice RGUs increased 8 percent, to total 20,245. Data RGUs increased by 12 percent compared with the year-ago quarter, to total 61,718.
The company’s consolidated 2007 revenues increased by 1 percent, to $207 million, largely due to a 15 percent increase in broadband revenues that helped offset a 5 percent decrease in wireline revenues and a 4 percent decline in wireless revenues.
Consolidated net income increased to $62.9 million in 2007, from $5.7 million in 2006, as a result of a $60.2 million gain from the sale of SureWest Directories.
Consolidated operating expenses increased 6 percent, to $36.6 million, in the fourth quarter of 2007, compared with $34.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2006. For the full-year 2007, consolidated operating expenses increased 5 percent, to $144 million, from $137 million in 2006.
In December, SureWest announced its intention to acquire 100 percent of the outstanding stock of Everest Broadband for $173 million in cash (story here ). The transaction, which closed last month, more than doubled SureWest’s triple-play residential subscriber base and facilitates the expansion of its business services, the company said.
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