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VZW Q4: $9 Billion in Charges, 2.1 Million Net Adds

Mon, 01/07/2013 - 5:16pm
Andrew Berg

Speaking at an investor conference ahead of his opening keynote tomorrow at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam disclosed some good and some bad pertaining to his company's fourth quarter. 

McAdam said that while the company had a record fourth quarter, adding 2.1 million net subscribers, it would also be writing down a total of $9 to $10 billion in one-time charges, related to everything from refinancing costs to superstorm Sandy. 

Historic net additions should keep investors smiling, but McAdam also cautioned that 2013 could be flat.

On the one-time charges, McAdam said almost $1 billion was related to the fallout from super storm Sandy. He said that following the storm, Verizon pulled out approximately 130 tons of copper in Manhattan and is replacing that with copper. 

"So if I do all the math right, we're around $9 to $10 billion in one-time charges," McAdam said. 

McAdam also said that 85 percent of the devices the company sold were smartphones, and the company's shared data plans had caught on better than expected. He also said that the percentage of Verizon Wireless customer base operating on LTE had grown from 16 percent to 23 percent from the third to the fourth quarter of 2012. 

When asked to comment on remarks he made to the Wall Street Journal earlier in the day, regarding the possible purchase of Vodafone's 45 percent stake in the Verizon Wireless venture, McAdam clarified that he was only talking about Verizon Wireless and not an outright acquisition of Vodafone. 

"This is not anything new...we've always been ready to buy out Vodafone's 45 percent interest in Verizon Wireless," McAdam said.

Going forward, McAdam reference acquisitions of cloud provider Terremark and M2M provider Hughes Telematics as examples of exactly how the company envisions growth going forward.  

"We're really focused on strategic platforms that will allow us to add applications and solutions for customers that ride on that network," McAdam said.

McAdam also added that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will join him on stage at CES tomorrow for an announcement. McAdam is scheduled to take the stage at 4:30 p.m. PST on Tuesday. 

 

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