Sprint Q3: 1.4 million iPhones sold, reports $383M profit

Summary:The U.S. cellular giant swings to profit under the new ownership of Japan's SoftBank, but loses 313,000 customers during the quarter.

Sprint reported a fiscal third-quarter profit on Wednesday, just weeks after the third-largest U.S. cellular giant was taken over by Japan's SoftBank.

The company bounced back by posting a net profit of $383 million, compared to a $767 million loss on the year-ago quarter (statement). It reported an operating loss of $398 million, compared to $231 million a year earlier. 

The cellular firm did not break out earnings per share following the takeover.

During the quarter, Sprint reported a net loss of 313,000 customers, including a net loss of 360,000 contract customers — the company's main bread and butter. But the upshot was that Sprint sold 5 million smartphones during the three-month period, including 1.4 million iPhones.

Sprint said it ended the quarter with 54.8 million customers, despite posting losses on its Nextel business, which it shut down earlier this year.

Telecoms giant Softbank  made a bid to acquire a 70 percent stake  in Sprint, the U.S.' third-largest cellular giant, last October. Under the terms of the deal, Softbank will pay $16.6 billion to Sprint shareholders and throw in an additional $5 billion in capital for a 78 percent stake in the carrier. 

Following the closing of the deal, Sprint was expected to receive a much-needed financial bump from its new owner. 

Chief executive Dan Hesse said in prepared remarks that the company continues to "make great strides" in its 4G LTE rollout, in which it added 45 new markets to its U.S. coverage map.

Hesse added: "We expect our network investments will bring customers greater speeds and capacity and, when combined with our unique unlimited for life offers, will improve our competitive positioning."

Screen Shot 2013-10-30 at 10.48.13
Image: Sprint

Topics: Networking

About

Zack Whittaker writes for ZDNet, CNET, and CBS News. He is based in New York City.

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