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AT&T Reports Fourth-Quarter Results

January 28, 2009

AT&T today reported fourth-quarter and full-year results highlighted by strong wireless subscriber gains and continued progress in key growth areas including wireless data services, IP-based services for businesses and AT&T U-verse TV.

For the fourth quarter, AT&T’s revenues totaled $31.1 billion, net income was $2.4 billion and cash from operating activities totaled $10.9 billion. Full-year revenues totaled $124.0 billion, net income was $12.9 billion and cash from operating activities totaled $33.7 billion.
"Despite the economic environment, we grew revenues in 2008, and I expect 2009 will be another year of overall revenue growth and solid progress for our company,” said Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and chief executive officer.
Fourth-Quarter Reported Results
The quarter ended Dec. 31, 2008, with AT&T's consolidated revenues totaled at $31.1 billion, up 2.4 percent. Consolidated revenue growth was driven by 13.2 percent wireless growth and a 14.2 percent increase in wireline IP data revenues, which include AT&T U-verse services and business offerings such as VPNs and managed Internet services. Gains in these areas more than offset pressures from the macro-environment, including impacts on access lines and wireline voice usage.
AT&T's reported fourth-quarter 2008 net income totaled $2.4 billion versus $3.1 billion in the year-earlier quarter, and reported earnings per diluted share totaled $0.41, compared with $0.51 in the fourth quarter of 2007.
Stephenson added, "During the past year, we took major steps to improve AT&T’s position for 2009 and beyond. The success of our iPhone 3G launch has driven wireless growth and helped redefine the wireless data space. Our AT&T U-verse TV service continues to ramp. We completed the world's largest deployment of the fastest Internet backbone technology across our U.S. network. We further expanded our industry-leading network capabilities and product sets for the business market.”
Wireless Operational Highlights
AT&T’s fourth-quarter wireless growth was powered by strong subscriber gains and continued rapid growth in advanced data services, company officials said, which drove solid improvement in postpaid ARPU.
Highlights include the following:
  • 2.1 Million Net Gain in Wireless Subscribers
  • 1.9 Million Apple iPhone 3G Activations
  • Leadership in Integrated Devices
  • 51.2 Percent Wireless Data Revenue Growth
  • Retail Postpaid Subscriber ARPU Up 3.9 Percent
  • 13.2 Percent Total Wireless Revenue Growth
“I am pleased to say that as we made these advances, we also delivered on our cost initiatives and returned substantial value to shareowners, including our 25th consecutive annual dividend increase, which was announced in December,” said Stephenson.
Wireline Operational Highlights
AT&T's fourth-quarter wireline results included continued double-digit growth in IP data revenues, reported the company, a further ramp in AT&T U-verse TV subscribers and a sustained turnaround in wholesale revenues.
Highlights include the following:
  • Strengthened AT&T U-verse Ramp
  • 14.2 Percent Growth in Wireline IP Data Revenues
  • Growth in Consumer ARPU
  • Broadband Growth.
  • Wholesale Turnaround
  • Retail Business IP Data Growth
2009 Outlook
In 2009, AT&T said in a statement that they expect to deliver solid results with growth in consolidated revenues, making significant progress in its key growth initiatives, keeping an aggressive focus on cost management and continue its strong record of returning substantial value to shareowners.
“Looking ahead, while we are cautious about the economic environment, AT&T is well positioned with a strong balance sheet and premier operational assets, and I am very confident in our ability to execute,” Stephenson said.

Jessica Kostek is a channel editor for unified communications, covering VoIP, CRM, call center and wireless technologies. To read more of Jessica’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Jessica Kostek

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