by Luke Jones
Posted 5/8/2014 09:15 am
Updated 4 months ago
Windstream Holdings Inc. of Little Rock on Thursday reported a 69 percent decline in first-quarter profit and 2 percent drop in revenue.
The telecommunications firm (Nasdaq: WIN) said first-quarter earnings were $16 million, or 2 cents per share, compared with $52 million, or 9 cents per share, in the same quarter last year.
Earnings came on revenue of $1.46 billion, down from $1.49 billion in the same quarter last year.
Windstream, which held its annual meeting on Wednesday, also affirmed its previous guidance for 2014. It said total revenue would come in a range between a 2.5 percent decline to a 1 percent increase compared to 2013.
In his remarks included with the company’s financial results, President and CEO Jeff Gardner said total revenue trends had improved since last year and compared to fourth quarter.
"We are very focused on improving business revenue trends and are taking many proactive steps to accelerate sales and strengthen our competitive position," Gardner said. "In addition, we are investing in both the business and consumer network to drive growth opportunities and improve the customer experience."
During the quarter, the company had merger and integration costs of $7.4 million, up 45 percent from 2013, and restructuring charges of $12.9 million.
Broken down, business services made up $748 million of Windstream's revenue, mostly flat with 2013; data and integrated services accounted for $414, up 3 percent; carrier revenue was $162 million, down 3 percent; consumer broadband was $120 million, up 2 percent; and overall consumer service revenue was $313, down 4 percent.
In a conference call with analysts, Gardner detailed three areas the company is working on for 2014.
First, it is undergoing a large marketing effort, which Gardner said will include increased advertising with a "refreshed brand." Second, the company is unifying its enterprise system by moving billing, provisioning and sales management systems onto a single platform. Gardner said this includes converting the remainder of Paetec Holding Corp., which Windstream acquired in 2011, to Windstream's systems by the end of 2014.
Finally, the company continues to undergo strategic initiatives, which includes expansion to broadband and upgrades to its network. That includes reaching 75,000 new homes.