Verizon's Shammo: Strike, hurricanes could impact Q3 FiOS subscriber numbers

Verizon's (NYSE: VZ) recent double whammy of Hurricane Irene and a union strike set the telco back $250 million on its wireline business this quarter.

Fran Shammo, Verizon

Shammo: "we are two to three weeks from getting the repair and maintenance flows back to normal."

Although the union workers made decent progress on a backlog of repair and installation orders after returning to work, the problem was exacerbated by downed power lines and flooding from Hurricane Irene.

"The catastrophic event has really taken an impact," said Verizon Chief Financial Officer Fran Shammo during the Bank of America Corp. conference in Beverly Hills, referring to the storm that followed the union workers strike. "Putting that all together, where we stand today we are two to three weeks from getting the repair and maintenance flows back to normal."

Shammo added that it will probably take about 90-100 days to fulfill its installation requests.   

During the strike, Verizon decided to focus on maintenance and repair issues and delay new installations. According to one company estimate, Verizon has a backlog of 100,000 orders for FiOS. Some subscribers were told that their service might not be installed for as long as four months.

Not surprisingly, these events will cut into the amount of new FiOS subscribers in the third quarter financial report. In Q2 Verizon added 184,000 new FiOS TV subs, bringing it to the 3.8 million mark

"In the third quarter, we expect less net adds on the FiOS side of the house, but in the fourth quarter we'll see how that plays itself out," Shammo said.

For more:
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Special report: IPTV in the second quarter of 2011

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