Premiere Global Services, Inc. (PGI)

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Premiere Global Services, Inc. (PGI)

Q3 2009 Earnings Call Transcript

October 22, 2009 5:00 pm ET

Executives

Sean O'Brien – SVP, Strategic Planning and IR

Boland Jones – Founder, Chairman and CEO

Ted Schrafft – President

David Trine – CFO

Analysts

Shyam Patil – Raymond James & Associates

Tavis McCourt – Morgan Keegan

Mike Latimore – Northland Securities

Sri Anantha – Oppenheimer

Richard Todaro – Kennedy Capital

Bill Sutherland – Boenning & Scattergood

Presentation

Operator

Good day and welcome everyone to the Premiere Global Services Incorporated Third Quarter 2009 Conference Call. Today’s call is being recorded. This call is also being simultaneously broadcast over the Internet. You can go to our website, www.premiereglobal.com and go to our Press section.

Alternatively, you may listen to the rebroadcast from your telephone beginning at 8.00 PM Eastern Time today through midnight Friday, October 30th. The replay numbers are 1-888-203-1112 within the United States and Canada or 1-719-457-0820 worldwide. The confirmation code to access the replay is 1432472. All lines will be muted throughout the presentation until the question-and-answer period begins.

At this time, I would like to turn the conference over to the Senior Vice President of Strategic Planning and Investor Relations for Premiere Global Services, Mr. Sean O’Brien. Please go ahead, sir.

Sean O’Brien

Thank you and good afternoon everyone. If you’ve not received a copy of our third quarter earnings release, please visit our website at premiereglobal.com, where it is available in our Investor Relations section.

Joining me on the call today are Boland Jones, our Chairman and CEO, Ted Schrafft, President of PGI, and David Trine, our CFO. Following some brief comments by management, we’ll open the call to your questions.

Before I turn the call over to Boland, I’d like to remind everyone that statements made in this conference call, other than those concerning historical information, should be considered forward-looking and subject to various risks and uncertainties. Such forward-looking statements are based on management’s beliefs, as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to management, pursuant to the Safe Harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.

Our actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements as a result of a variety of factors, including those we identified in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2008, our quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended June 30, 2009, and our other filings with the SEC.

In addition, during this call, we will present non-GAAP financial measures of our business. Please consult both our press release and Form 8-K filings of this afternoon for reconciliation of these non-GAAP financial measures to the most comparable GAAP measures. These materials are also available on our website at premiereglobal.com.

At this point, I’d like to turn the call over to Boland.

Boland Jones

Thanks, Sean and good afternoon, everyone. This is Boland Jones, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of PGI. Welcome and thank you all for joining our third quarter earnings call. I’m very pleased that our company continues to make meaningful strategic and operational progress this year despite a very challenging economy that is weighing on our financial results.

Today, our results are largely driven by our conferencing and collaboration solutions, what we refer to as our meeting business. As I mentioned on our last call, we are focusing our corporate strategy and our strength in the meeting business. As it represents the vast majority of our revenues, we believe that it also provides very high value to our customers and is proven to be very scalable and continues to drive solid margins. And lastly, we believe it offers great growth opportunities for us now and into the future.

PGI has a long record of success in the meeting business. We've grown from around $50 million in conferencing 10 years ago to approaching $0.5 billion in annual revenue today, representing compound annual growth of nearly 24%. Over the last five year, we’ve helped about 400 million people meet more than a 100 million times on our global platforms. And in the third quarter alone, we connected nearly 34 million people from around 60 countries worldwide in nearly 9 million virtual meetings.


This last time last year, when almost every other business was being affected by this global financial crisis, we were continuing to generating around 15% organic growth in our meeting business. Today, many of those companies are beginning to see stabilization in their trends, but we are containing to feel the lagging effects of today's economic slowdown and lower business activity and lower business activity and higher global unemployment that puts pressure on our trends.

People power meetings and there are a lot fewer people in the workforce today than they were last year and ever last quarter. The U.S. economy has lost nearly 6 million jobs compared to this time last year and estimates of the global job loss during this financial crisis maybe up to 50 million jobs, representing a tremendous number of people taken out of potential meetings all around the world. As a result, we remain cautious in our near-term outlook. Although we are reluctant to forecast a rebound in our business trends just yet, recently our own internal and external indicators are causing us to be more optimistic.

For example, we’ve seen a modest stabilization in sequential volume trends in our meeting business over the past few weeks. Our new customer acquisitions remain very strong and at the upper end of our historic ranges. On a macro level, we believe improving jobless claims, an uptick in small business confidence and analyst forecast for return to growth in IT spending, all suggest elements of future economic stabilization. But we are not waiting around necessarily for the economy to improve. We are actively investing, expanding our reach to take additional market share during this industry reset.

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