Verizon Posts Profit, Wireless Subs Beat Estimates

By Reuters -  |  Posted 2008-01-28

NEW YORK, Jan 28 (Reuters) - Verizon Communications on Monday posted a higher quarterly profit in line with Street expectations and wireless customer growth that was slightly ahead of analyst estimates.

Its profit rose to $1.07 billion, or 37 cents a share, from $1.03 billion, or 35 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter.

Excluding items such as severance expenses, Verizon said it earned 62 cents a share.

Revenue rose to $23.8 billion from $22.6 billion.

Analysts on average were expecting earnings of 62 cents a share on revenue of $23.99 billion, according to Reuters Estimates.

Verizon Wireless, its mobile venture with Vodafone Group Plc, added 2 million net new subscribers in the quarter compared with average analyst estimates for 1.85 million from eight analysts contacted by Reuters.

The results from the second-biggest U.S. wireless provider follow a report of strong mobile customer growth from bigger rival AT&T Inc the week before and steep customer losses from No. 3 wireless rival Sprint Nextel.

Chief Executive Ivan Seidenberg said in a statement that investors could expect continued revenue growth and expense reductions in 2008.

"We see significant opportunities to grow revenues and expand our leadership in wireless and broadband markets, while reducing operating expenses," he said. 

Verizon had said earlier this month that it was not seeing an impact from the U.S. economic slowdown after AT&T had said it was seeing some softness in consumer businesses such as broadband and telephone access lines.

(Reporting by Sinead Carew; Editing by Mark Porter)

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