Verizon reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings as the company added 558,000 postpaid wireless phone subscribers.
The company reported a fourth-quarter net income of $4.7 billion, or $1.11 a share, on revenue of $34.1 billion, down 1.8% from a year ago. Non-GAAP earnings for the fourth quarter were $1.31 a share. In Q4, the company saw a total wireless service revenue of $17.8 billion, a 6.5% increase year over year.
Verizon reported 1,058,000 retail postpaid net additions, including 558,000 phone net additions. The company now has 142.8 million total retail connections.
Wall Street expected Verizon to report fourth-quarter revenue of $34.1 billion with non-GAAP earnings of $1.29 a share.
For the full fiscal year, Verizon reported earnings per share of $5.32, compared to $4.30 in 2020. Operating revenue for 2021 was up 4.1% year over year at $133.6 billion.
"We delivered on all of our goals in 2021 and made great progress on our five paths of growth, finishing the year with strong operating and financial momentum," said Verizon Chairman and CEO Hans Vestberg.
"As we move into 2022, we have the necessary assets to realize our strategy that we laid out in 2019. We are laser-focused on executing our 5G strategy and providing value to our customers, shareholders, employees, and society, as 2022 will be the most exciting year yet for Verizon."
By the numbers:
- Verizon saw 667,000 wireless retail postpaid net additions in the fourth quarter, including 336,000 phone net additions and 369,000 other connected device net additions, offset by 38,000 tablet net losses.
- The company had 55,000 Fios Internet net additions in Q4 2021 but reported 69,000 Fios Video net losses.
- Verizon reported 391,000 wireless retail postpaid net additions in Q4 2021, including 222,000 phone net additions. The company said this was the best quarterly phone net addition performance for their business division since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As for the outlook, Verizon said it expects organic service and other revenue growth of around 3% and wireless service revenue growth in the range of 9% to 10%.
For 2022, the company predicts an adjusted EPS of $5.40 to $5.55. They are also expecting a reduction in capital spending from $18.2 billion in 2021 to between $16.5 billion and $17.5 billion.
Verizon Chief Financial Officer Matt Ellis added that they expanded their portfolio with the acquisition of TracFone.
"In 2021, we delivered on raised adjusted EPS expectations, grew revenue, achieved our $10 billion cost-savings goal, and funded our C-Band spectrum investment," Ellis said.