By Dow Jones Business News, October 30, 2013, 07:55:00 AM EDT
Sprint Corp. ( S ) swung to a third-quarter profit in its first quarterly report since Japan'sSoftBank Corp. (9984.TO)
acquired a majority stake in the company, as the cell-phone carrier reported a large one-time gain from its investment
in Clearwire Corp.
Over the summer, SoftBank completed a three-way merger with Sprint and Clearwire, gaining control of both companies.
The deal provides a multibillion-dollar injection of cash for Sprint, giving the Overland Park, Kan., company much-
needed capital to expand its high-speed wireless network.
Sprint has languished as a second-tier U.S. wireless carrier for years, following its problematic $35 billion merger
with Nextel in 2005 that saddled it with the costs of running two separate networks, one of which it finally shut down
completely a few months ago. Now under SoftBank, Sprint needs to prove it's able to compete in a wireless industry
currently dominated by Verizon Wireless and AT&T Inc. (T).
Sprint reported a profit of $383 million, compared with a year-earlier loss of $767 million. The latest period
included a one-time $1.4 billion gain related to the write-up of Sprint's previously held investment in Clearwire.
Revenue fell 0.9% to $8.68 billion.
Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had most recently forecast revenue of $8.81 billion.
The company lost 535,000 net contract subscribers in the latest quarter, compared with losses of 1.05 million in the
prior quarter after it turned off the Nextel network in June and a loss of 456,000 a year earlier.
Earlier this month, Verizon Wireless reported 927,000 net contract additions and AT&T reported 363,000.
The total contract customer turnover rate was 2.09%, compared with 2.63% in the prior quarter and 2.09% a year ago.
Sprint sold nearly 1.4 million iPhones during the quarter with 40% going to new customers.
Shares closed Tuesday at $6.68.
Write to Ben Fox Rubin at firstname.lastname@example.org
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