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February 15, 2010

Qwest Q4 revenue down 9.7% to $3bn

Anticipates adjusted EBITDA to be in the range of $4.3bn to $4.4bn for FY 2010

By CBR Staff Writer

Qwest communications has reported operating revenue of $3bn for the fourth quarter of 2009, a decrease of 9.7%, compared to 3.3bn for the same period last year.

The company posted an operating income of $450m, a decrease of 19.5% compared to an operating income of $559m for the same period last year.

For the quarter ended December 31, 2009, the company posted a net income of $108m, a 39% decline, compared to $177m a year-ago. Net income per share for the quarter declined by 40% to $0.06 from $0.1. The decline is mainly due to lower operating income, driven by lower revenues and increased interest expense, which were partially offset by lower expenses. Net income declined $28m sequentially.

Business markets revenues decreased by 2% to $1.03bn, mass markets segment revenues declined by13% to $1.2bn, compared to the same period last year. Wholesale markets segment revenue was $679m, down 14% compared to the prior year mainly due to lower long-distance revenue.

For the full year 2009, the company reported operating revenue of $12.3bn, a 8.6% decline from $13.5bn in 2008. Operating income was $1.9bn, down 5.8% from $2.1bn last year. Net income was $662m, a decrease of 1.5% from $652m in 2008.

Edward Mueller, chairman and CEO of Qwest, said: “Throughout 2009, the Qwest team stood up to the challenges of a tough economy and highly competitive markets to deliver value for our shareholders.

“In particular, we did an excellent job of generating cash flows and strengthening the balance sheet. In 2010, our goal is to continue to excel in these areas while adding improved revenue performance to our list of achievements. We continue to be optimistic about our prospects in the coming year.”

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Qwest anticipates full year 2010 adjusted EBITDA to be in the range of $4.3bn to $4.4bn. Capital investments for full year 2010 is expected to be $1.7bn or lower and adjusted free cash flow is expected to be between $1.5bn and $1.6bn.

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