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Clearwire (CLWR)

Q4 2010 Earnings Call

February 17, 2011 4:30 pm ET


John Saw - Chief Technology Officer and Senior Vice President

William Morrow - Chief Executive Officer and Director

G. Sievert - Chief Commercial Officer

Erik Prusch - Chief Financial Officer

Paul Blalock - Senior Vice President, Investor Relations


Sundar Varadarajan - Deutsche Bank

Michael Nelson - Mizuho Securities USA, Inc.

Shing Yin - Citadel Securities, LLC

Walter Piecyk - BTIG, LLC

Philip Cusick - JP Morgan Chase & Co

Michael Funk - BofA Merrill Lynch

Kevin Coyne - Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

Philip Nanney

Ana Goshko - BofA Merrill Lynch

David Sharret - Lehman Brothers

Richard Prentiss - Raymond James & Associates



Good day, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to your Fourth Quarter 2010 Clearwire Corporation Earnings Conference Call. [Operator Instructions] At this time, I would now like to turn the conference over to your host, Mr. Paul Blalock. Sir, you may begin.

Paul Blalock

Thank you, Joe. Good afternoon, and welcome to Clearwire's fourth quarter and full year 2010 financial results conference call. With me today are Bill Morrow, Chief Executive Officer; and Erik Prusch, Chief Financial Officer, who will both discuss Clearwire's fourth quarter and year-end results.

As a reminder to all listeners, today's call is being webcast on the Clearwire Investor Relations website and will be archived on that site and available for replay shortly after we conclude. Hopefully, you've all had an opportunity to read the release issued a few minutes ago, which provides detailed financial information regarding Clearwire's results.

Today's call may contain forward-looking statements reflecting management's beliefs and assumptions concerning future events and trends in or expectations regarding financial results. Forward-looking statements include, among other things, our future financial and operating performance and financial conditions, including projections and targets for 2011 and subsequent periods, subscriber growth, network development and market launch plans, including strategic plans and objectives and the need for additional financing.

These forward-looking statements are all based on currently available operating, financial and competitive information and are subject to various risks and uncertainties. Listeners are cautioned to not put undue reliance on any forward-looking statements, as they are not a guarantee of future performance. Please refer to our press release and our filings with the SEC for more information concerning risk factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. The company assumes no obligation to update any of these forward-looking statements. And lastly, a reconciliation of any non-GAAP financial measures discussed today on this call can be found in our press release.

I will now turn the call over to Bill Morrow.

William Morrow

Thanks, Paul. Good afternoon everyone, and thank you for your continued interest in our company.

We told you last year about this time that 2010 was going to be a year of growth, and our year-end results indicate nothing less. We had a record-setting year as we built the nation's first 4G wireless network with a tripling of our POP coverage, a quintupling of our customer base and a more than doubling of our revenue. This firmly established our position as a leader in the mobile broadband industry. Few companies have been able to achieve such a rapid expansion while simultaneously introducing a truly new category of service and brand. This could not have been done without an extraordinary group of employees who took on and met the challenge we gave them.

Today, I'll first touch upon the highlights of this remarkable year, then Erik will take you through our financial results and key metrics, and then I'll wrap up by covering our plans for the year ahead and provide updates on some of the key issues facing our company. I believe you all now have the earnings report, but I would like to provide a bit more color for some of the key points.

During 2010, we grew our domestic 4G coverage from 34 million POPs to approximately 112 million. And in recent weeks, we have added new sites covering an additional 7 million people. This recent effort brings 4G service to a number of geographically dispersed areas, where broadband service isn't available today and is in line with our spectrum license service requirements.

It is with pleasure to report that with the addition of these sites, our 4G network now reaches 119 million people across the country. That is a record increase of 240% in covered POPs from where we ended in 2009 and a record pace for a network build. Again, a good example of our employees who stepped up and delivered.

On the customer front, Clearwire ended 2009 with 688,000 total subscribers, and in 2010, we grew that figure by approximately 540%, adding more than 3.7 million in customers and ending the year with approximately 4.4 million. And while many operators are pleased to reach positive subscriber growth, Clearwire's fourth quarter additions were $1.5 million, making us one of the fastest-growing wireless companies in the nation.

It's no secret that 4G is all about high usage, and Clearwire has a spectrum to serve the tremendous pent-up demand for mobile broadband data. Unlike some in the industry, our 4G-network deployment is robust in that we now have nearly 50,000 10 MHz carriers of spectrum, operating on approximately 14,500 cell sites, and it's ready for the high pent-up usage that customers are demanding.

This is where we walk the walk in terms of our spectrum advantage and the capacity that we can deploy to handle the increasing demand of the mobile user.

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