CenturyLink: Broadband, lower line loss help soothe Q1 revenue pains

CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL) found that broadband and decreased voice line loss were key in helping the service provider offset declines in overall revenue and net income. In the losses column, CenturyLink, reported that 126,000 business and residential voice lines shut off their phone service. However, the Q1 2010 landline losses were down from 146,000 lines lost in Q4 09 and 132,000 lost by the former CenturyTel and EMBARQ in Q1 09.  

While the industry will have to wait until next year to assess the affect its proposed acquisition of Qwest (NYSE: Q), CenturyLink's acquisition of the former EMBARQ has been good for broadband access services. During Q1, 70,000 new customers signed up for CenturyLink's broadband service, an increase over the 47,000 that came on line in the fourth quarter and 64,000 in Q1 09. These additions brought the company's total broadband subscriber base to 2.3 million.  

"Consumer demand for broadband services remained very strong as we added a quarterly record 70,000 high-speed Internet customers," said President and Chief Executive Glen F. Post III in a release. "Additionally, business and enterprise demand for high bandwidth data services continues to strengthen and should provide a revenue growth opportunity."

On the financial side, CenturyLink saw its share of hits and misses. First quarter revenue declined from $1.84 in Q4 09 to $1.8 billion. Similarly, net income declined from $286.7 million in Q4 to $279.2 million. But even with these losses, CenturyLink has upped its 2010 forecast from $3.20 to $3.30 on a revenue decline of 6.5 percent to 7.5 percent.

For more:
- see the release here
- Wall Street Journal has this article

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