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WKN: 875189 | ISIN: US9116841084 | Ticker-Symbol: US7
Frankfurt
23.04.24
08:01 Uhr
32,400 Euro
-0,600
-1,82 %
Branche
Telekom
Aktienmarkt
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UNITED STATES CELLULAR CORPORATION Chart 1 Jahr
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UNITED STATES CELLULAR CORPORATION 5-Tage-Chart
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33,00033,80023.04.
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(1)

United States Cellular Corporation: UScellular reports fourth quarter and full year 2023 results

Provides guidance for 2024

CHICAGO, Feb. 16, 2024 /PRNewswire/ --

As previously announced, UScellular will hold a teleconference on February 16, 2024 at 9:00 a.m. CST. Listen to the call live via the Events & Presentations page of investors.uscellular.com.

United States Cellular Corporation (NYSE: USM) reported total operating revenues of $1,000 million for the fourth quarter of 2023, versus $1,048 million for the same period one year ago. Net income (loss) attributable to UScellular shareholders and related diluted earnings (loss) per share were $14 million and $0.16, respectively, for the fourth quarter of 2023 compared to $(28) million and $(0.33), respectively, in the same period one year ago.

UScellular reported total operating revenues of $3,906 million and $4,169 million for the years ended 2023 and 2022, respectively. Net income attributable to UScellular shareholders and related diluted earnings per share were $54 million and $0.63, respectively, for the year ended 2023 compared to $30 million and $0.35, respectively, for the year ended 2022.

Full-year 2023 Highlights*

  • Postpaid ARPU grew 2%
  • Delivering on growth initiatives
    • Fixed wireless customers grew 46% to 114,000
    • Tower rental revenues grew 8% to $100 million
  • Increased profitability
    • Net income, Adjusted OIBDA and Adjusted EBITDA up
  • Generated positive free cash flow and increased cash flows from operating activities
  • Began launching 5G mid-band network - providing low latency and faster speeds

*Comparisons are Year Ended December 31, 2023 to Year Ended December 31, 2022

"At UScellular, we are focused on connecting people to what matters most," said Laurent Therivel, UScellular President and CEO. "In 2023, Postpaid ARPU increased 2%, we made significant progress on our 5G network deployment, and we delivered strong results in fixed wireless. Even though we experienced challenging subscriber results in an aggressive competitive environment, I'm pleased with the improvements we were able to drive in profitability year over year. ?

"In 2024, we plan to continue focusing on improving subscriber results, driving growth in fixed wireless and towers, and maintaining financial discipline as we advance the network through our mid-band deployment."

Recent Development: On August 4, 2023, Telephone and Data Systems, Inc. (TDS) and UScellular announced that the Boards of Directors of both companies decided to initiate a process to explore a range of strategic alternatives for UScellular. The process is still ongoing.

2024 Estimated Results

UScellular's current estimates of full-year 2024 results are shown below. Such estimates represent management's view as of February 16, 2024 and should not be assumed to be current as of any future date. UScellular undertakes no duty to update such estimates, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. There can be no assurance that final results will not differ materially from estimated results.


2024 Estimated
Results


Actual Results for

the Year Ended

December 31, 2023

(Dollars in millions)




Service revenues

$2,950-$3,050


$3,044

Adjusted OIBDA1, 2

$750-$850


$818

Adjusted EBITDA1, 2

$920-$1,020


$986

Capital expenditures

$550-$650


$611

The following table reconciles EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA, and Adjusted OIBDA to the corresponding GAAP measures, Net income or Income before income taxes. In providing 2024 estimated results, UScellular has not completed the below reconciliation to Net income because it does not provide guidance for income taxes. Although potentially significant, UScellular believes that the impact of income taxes cannot be reasonably predicted; therefore, UScellular is unable to provide such guidance.


2024 Estimated
Results2


Actual Results for

the Year Ended

December 31, 2023


Actual Results for
the Year Ended
December 31, 2022

(Dollars in millions)






Net income (GAAP)

N/A


$58


$35

Add back:






Income tax expense

N/A


53


37

Income before income taxes (GAAP)

$40-$140


$111


$72

Add back:






Interest expense

195


196


163

Depreciation, amortization and accretion expense

665


656


700

EBITDA (Non-GAAP)1

$900-$1,000


$963


$935

Add back or deduct:






Expenses related to strategic alternatives review

-


8


-

Loss on impairment of licenses

-


-


3

(Gain) loss on asset disposals, net

20


17


19

(Gain) loss on sale of business and other exit costs, net

-


-


(1)

(Gain) loss on license sales and exchanges, net

-


(2)


-

Adjusted EBITDA (Non-GAAP)1

$920-$1,020


$986


$956

Deduct:






Equity in earnings of unconsolidated entities

160


158


158

Interest and dividend income

10


10


8

Adjusted OIBDA (Non-GAAP)1

$750-$850


$818


$790







1

EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted OIBDA are defined as net income adjusted for the items set forth in the reconciliation above. EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted OIBDA are not measures of financial performance under Generally Accepted Accounting Principles in the United States (GAAP) and should not be considered as alternatives to Net income or Cash flows from operating activities, as indicators of cash flows or as measures of liquidity. UScellular does not intend to imply that any such items set forth in the reconciliation above are infrequent or unusual; such items may occur in the future. Management uses Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted OIBDA as measurements of profitability, and therefore reconciliations to Net income are deemed appropriate. Management believes Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted OIBDA are useful measures of UScellular's operating results before significant recurring non-cash charges, nonrecurring expenses, gains and losses, and other items as presented above as they provide additional relevant and useful information to investors and other users of UScellular's financial data in evaluating the effectiveness of its operations and underlying business trends in a manner that is consistent with management's evaluation of business performance. Adjusted EBITDA shows adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization and accretion, gains and losses, and expenses related to the strategic alternatives review of UScellular while Adjusted OIBDA reduces this measure further to exclude Equity in earnings of unconsolidated entities and Interest and dividend income in order to more effectively show the performance of operating activities excluding investment activities. The table above reconciles EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted OIBDA to the corresponding GAAP measure, Net income or Income before income taxes. Additional information and reconciliations related to Non-GAAP financial measures for December 31, 2023, can be found on UScellular's website at investors.uscellular.com.

2

2024 Estimated Results do not reflect any anticipated costs, expenses or results of the strategic alternatives review referenced above.

Conference Call Information

UScellular will hold a conference call on February 16, 2024 at 9:00 a.m. Central Time.

  • Access the live call on the Events & Presentations page of investors.uscellular.com or at https://events.q4inc.com/attendee/105947395
  • Access the call by phone at (888) 330-2384 (US/ Canada), conference ID: 1328528

Before the call, certain financial and statistical information to be discussed during the call will be posted to investors.uscellular.com. The call will be archived on the Events & Presentations page of investors.uscellular.com.

About UScellular
United States Cellular Corporation provides a comprehensive range of wireless products and services, excellent customer support, and a high-quality network to customers with 4.6 million retail connections in 21 states. The Chicago -based company had 4,300 full- and part-time associates as of December 31, 2023. At the end of the fourth quarter of 2023, Telephone and Data Systems, Inc. owned approximately 83% of UScellular. For more information about UScellular, visit uscellular.com.

Safe Harbor Statement Under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: All information set forth in this news release, except historical and factual information, represents forward-looking statements. This includes all statements about the company's plans, beliefs, estimates, and expectations. These statements are based on current estimates, projections, and assumptions, which involve certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Important factors that may affect these forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to: whether any strategic alternatives for UScellular will be successfully identified or completed; whether any such strategic alternative will result in additional value for UScellular and its shareholders and whether the process will have an adverse impact on UScellular's business; intense competition; the ability to attract people of outstanding talent throughout all levels of the organization; UScellular's smaller scale relative to larger competitors; the ability to obtain or maintain roaming arrangements with other carriers on acceptable terms and changes in roaming practices; the ability to obtain access to adequate radio spectrum to meet current or anticipated future needs, including participation in FCC auctions; changes in demand, consumer preferences and perceptions, price competition, or churn rates; advances in technology; impacts of costs, integration problems or other factors associated with acquisitions, divestitures or exchanges of properties or wireless spectrum licenses and/or expansion of UScellular's businesses; the ability of the company to successfully construct and manage its networks; difficulties involving third parties with which UScellular does business; uncertainties in UScellular's future cash flows and liquidity and access to the capital markets; the ability to make payments on UScellular indebtedness or comply with the terms of debt covenants; conditions in the U.S. telecommunications industry; the value of assets and investments; the state and federal regulatory environment; pending and future litigation; cyber-attacks or other breaches of network or information technology security; potential conflicts of interests between TDS and UScellular; disruption in credit or other financial markets; deterioration of U.S. or global economic conditions; and the impact, duration and severity of public health emergencies. Investors are encouraged to consider these and other risks and uncertainties that are more fully described under "Risk Factors" in the most recent filing of UScellular's Form 10-K.

For more information about UScellular, visit: www.uscellular.com

United States Cellular Corporation

Summary Operating Data (Unaudited)

As of or for the Quarter Ended

12/31/2023


9/30/2023


6/30/2023


3/31/2023


12/31/2022

Retail Connections










Postpaid










Total at end of period

4,106,000


4,159,000


4,194,000


4,223,000


4,247,000

Gross additions

129,000


128,000


125,000


137,000


154,000

Handsets

80,000


84,000


83,000


93,000


105,000

Connected devices

49,000


44,000


42,000


44,000


49,000

Net additions (losses)

(50,000)


(35,000)


(28,000)


(24,000)


(17,000)

Handsets

(53,000)


(38,000)


(29,000)


(25,000)


(20,000)

Connected devices

3,000


3,000


1,000


1,000


3,000

ARPU1

$ 51.61


$ 51.11


$ 50.64


$ 50.66


$ 50.60

ARPA2

$ 131.63


$ 130.91


$ 130.19


$ 130.77


$ 130.97

Handset upgrade rate3

5.8 %


4.5 %


4.8 %


4.9 %


7.0 %

Churn rate4

1.44 %


1.30 %


1.21 %


1.27 %


1.35 %

Handsets

1.22 %


1.11 %


1.01 %


1.06 %


1.12 %

Connected devices

3.03 %


2.64 %


2.65 %


2.78 %


2.99 %

Prepaid










Total at end of period

451,000


462,000


462,000


470,000


493,000

Gross additions

43,000


52,000


50,000


43,000


61,000

Net additions (losses)

(11,000)


-


(8,000)


(23,000)


-

ARPU1, 5

$ 32.32


$ 33.44


$ 33.86


$ 33.19


$ 33.34

Churn rate4

3.87 %


3.68 %


4.18 %


4.63 %


4.11 %

Market penetration at end of period










Consolidated operating population

32,350,000


32,350,000


32,350,000


32,350,000


32,370,000

Consolidated operating penetration6

15 %


15 %


15 %


15 %


15 %

Capital expenditures (millions)

$ 148


$ 111


$ 143


$ 208


$ 176

Total cell sites in service

7,000


6,973


6,952


6,950


6,945

Owned towers

4,373


4,356


4,341


4,338


4,336











Due to rounding, the sum of quarterly results may not equal the total for the year.

1

Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) - metric is calculated by dividing a revenue base by an average number of connections and by the number of months in the period. These revenue bases and connection populations are shown below:

  • Postpaid ARPU consists of total postpaid service revenues and postpaid connections.
  • Prepaid ARPU consists of total prepaid service revenues and prepaid connections.

2

Average Revenue Per Account (ARPA) - metric is calculated by dividing total postpaid service revenues by the average number of postpaid accounts and by the number of months in the period.

3

Handset upgrade rate calculated as total handset upgrade transactions divided by average postpaid handset connections.

4

Churn rate represents the percentage of the connections that disconnect service each month. These rates represent the average monthly churn rate for each respective period.

5

Fourth quarter 2023 Prepaid ARPU excludes a $6 million reduction of prepaid revenue related to an adjustment to correct a prior period error recorded in the fourth quarter of 2023.

6

Market penetration is calculated by dividing the number of wireless connections at the end of the period by the total estimated population of consolidated operating markets.

United States Cellular Corporation

Consolidated Statement of Operations Highlights

(Unaudited)






Three Months Ended

December 31,


Year Ended

December 31,


2023


2022


2023 vs.
2022


2023


2022


2023 vs.
2022

(Dollars and shares in millions, except per share amounts)












Operating revenues












Service

$ 755


$ 774


(3) %


$ 3,044


$ 3,125


(3) %

Equipment sales

245


274


(10) %


862


1,044


(17) %

Total operating revenues

1,000


1,048


(5) %


3,906


4,169


(6) %













Operating expenses












System operations (excluding Depreciation, amortization and accretion reported below)

183


181


1 %


740


755


(2) %

Cost of equipment sold

280


330


(15) %


988


1,216


(19) %

Selling, general and administrative

349


374


(7) %


1,368


1,408


(3) %

Depreciation, amortization and accretion

166


179


(8) %


656


700


(6) %

Loss on impairment of licenses

-


-


-


-


3


N/M

(Gain) loss on asset disposals, net

3


11


(67) %


17


19


(9) %

(Gain) loss on sale of business and other exit costs, net

-


-


N/M


-


(1)


N/M

(Gain) loss on license sales and exchanges, net

(2)


-


N/M


(2)


-


N/M

Total operating expenses

979


1,075


(9) %


3,767


4,100


(8) %













Operating income (loss)

21


(27)


N/M


139


69


N/M













Investment and other income (expense)












Equity in earnings of unconsolidated entities

37


36


3 %


158


158


-

Interest and dividend income

2


3


(24) %


10


8


26 %

Interest expense

(49)


(49)


(3) %


(196)


(163)


(21) %

Total investment and other income (expense)

(10)


(10)


(10) %


(28)


3


N/M













Income (loss) before income taxes

11


(37)


N/M


111


72


54 %

Income tax expense (benefit)

(4)


(9)


64 %


53


37


43 %

Net income (loss)

15


(28)


N/M


58


35


67 %

Less: Net income attributable to noncontrolling interests, net of tax

1


-


(53) %


4


5


(24) %

Net income (loss) attributable to UScellular shareholders

$ 14


$ (28)


N/M


$ 54


$ 30


80 %













Basic weighted average shares outstanding

85


85


1 %


85


85


-

Basic earnings (loss) per share attributable to UScellular shareholders

$ 0.17


$ (0.33)


N/M


$ 0.64


$ 0.35


81 %













Diluted weighted average shares outstanding

88


85


3 %


87


86


-

Diluted earnings (loss) per share attributable to UScellular shareholders

$ 0.16


$ (0.33)


N/M


$ 0.63


$ 0.35


79 %













N/M - Percentage change not meaningful












United States Cellular Corporation

Consolidated Statement of Cash Flows

(Unaudited)





Year Ended December 31,

2023


2022

(Dollars in millions)




Cash flows from operating activities




Net income

$ 58


$ 35

Add (deduct) adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash flows from operating activities




Depreciation, amortization and accretion

656


700

Bad debts expense

104


132

Stock-based compensation expense

23


24

Deferred income taxes, net

47


33

Equity in earnings of unconsolidated entities

(158)


(158)

Distributions from unconsolidated entities

150


145

Loss on impairment of licenses

-


3

(Gain) loss on asset disposals, net

17


19

(Gain) loss on sale of business and other exit costs, net

-


(1)

(Gain) loss on license sales and exchanges, net

(2)


-

Other operating activities

6


9

Changes in assets and liabilities from operations




Accounts receivable

17


(59)

Equipment installment plans receivable

(20)


(199)

Inventory

62


(88)

Accounts payable

(85)


12

Customer deposits and deferred revenues

(9)


47

Accrued taxes

-


121

Other assets and liabilities

-


57

Net cash provided by operating activities

866


832





Cash flows from investing activities




Cash paid for additions to property, plant and equipment

(608)


(602)

Cash paid for licenses

(130)


(585)

Other investing activities

17


8

Net cash used in investing activities

(721)


(1,179)





Cash flows from financing activities




Issuance of long-term debt

315


800

Repayment of long-term debt

(453)


(329)

Issuance of short-term debt

-


110

Repayment of short-term debt

(60)


(50)

Common Shares reissued for benefit plans, net of tax payments

(6)


(5)

Repurchase of Common Shares

-


(43)

Payment of debt issuance costs

(1)


(1)

Distributions to noncontrolling interests

(3)


(3)

Cash paid for software license agreements

(66)


(22)

Other financing activities

-


(1)

Net cash provided by (used in) financing activities

(274)


456





Net increase (decrease) in cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash

(129)


109





Cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash




Beginning of period

308


199

End of period

$ 179


$ 308

United States Cellular Corporation

Consolidated Balance Sheet Highlights

(Unaudited)


ASSETS





December 31,

2023


2022

(Dollars in millions)




Current assets




Cash and cash equivalents

$ 150


$ 273

Accounts receivable, net

957


1,072

Inventory, net

199


261

Prepaid expenses

57


68

Income taxes receivable

1


4

Other current assets

36


45

Total current assets

1,400


1,723





Assets held for sale

15


26





Licenses

4,693


4,690





Investments in unconsolidated entities

461


452





Property, plant and equipment, net

2,576


2,624





Operating lease right-of-use assets

915


918





Other assets and deferred charges

690


686





Total assets

$ 10,750


$ 11,119

United States Cellular Corporation

Consolidated Balance Sheet Highlights

(Unaudited)


LIABILITIES AND EQUITY





December 31,

2023


2022

(Dollars in millions, except per share amounts)




Current liabilities




Current portion of long-term debt

$ 20


$ 13

Accounts payable

248


356

Customer deposits and deferred revenues

229


239

Accrued taxes

32


35

Accrued compensation

83


84

Short-term operating lease liabilities

135


133

Other current liabilities

154


335

Total current liabilities

901


1,195





Deferred liabilities and credits




Deferred income tax liability, net

755


708

Long-term operating lease liabilities

831


843

Other deferred liabilities and credits

565


604





Long-term debt, net

3,044


3,187





Noncontrolling interests with redemption features

12


12





Equity




UScellular shareholders' equity




Series A Common and Common Shares, par value $1.00 per share

88


88

Additional paid-in capital

1,726


1,703

Treasury shares

(80)


(98)

Retained earnings

2,892


2,861

Total UScellular shareholders' equity

4,626


4,554





Noncontrolling interests

16


16





Total equity

4,642


4,570





Total liabilities and equity

$ 10,750


$ 11,119

United States Cellular Corporation

Financial Measures and Reconciliations

(Unaudited)

Free Cash Flow






Three Months Ended

December 31,


Year Ended

December 31,


2023


2022


2023


2022

(Dollars in millions)








Cash flows from operating activities (GAAP)

$ 148


$ 180


$ 866


$ 832

Cash paid for additions to property, plant and equipment

(155)


(192)


(608)


(602)

Cash paid for software license agreements

(37)


(17)


(66)


(22)

Free cash flow (Non-GAAP)1

$ (44)


$ (29)


$ 192


$ 208









1

Free cash flow is a non-GAAP financial measure which UScellular believes may be useful to investors and other users of its financial information in evaluating liquidity, specifically, the amount of net cash generated by business operations after deducting Cash paid for additions to property, plant and equipment and Cash paid for software license agreements.

SOURCE United States Cellular Corporation

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