Sprint Swings to Profit as Its Subscriber Losses Slow
Sprint Corp. reported a profit for its June quarter, as it slowed the rate of subscriber losses to rivals.
The nation’s third largest wireless carrier reported a profit of $23 million, or earnings of one penny per share, on revenue of nearly $8.8 billion in its fiscal first quarter. Analysts expected Sprint to report revenue of $8.69 billion.
Sprint reported a net loss of 220,000 customers, an improvement over the prior two quarters, as it races to upgrade its wireless network. It has been losing ground to competitors Verizon and AT&T, which each added more than 1 million subscribers in the June quarter.
Sprint lost some 383,000 customers in its first quarter as it struggled with the disruptions caused by its network overhaul.
The competitive pressure is mounting in the saturated U.S. market, where carriers — led by T-Mobile — have aggressively cut prices and launched other initiatives, such as unlimited music streaming, to lure subscribers from competitors.
Sprint has been losing subscribers at a higher than normal rate in places where its network upgrade is less than 70 percent complete. But since the company has reported that its upgrade is largely complete, those problems should abate. Its 4G LTE network now reaches about 254 million people.
The company’s possible merger with T-Mobile is expected to encounter regulatory hurdles.