Thursday, April 29, 2004
Aliant Reports First Quarter Results
Saint John, NB - April 29, 2004 -
- Revenues $504.4 million
- Net Income $38.3 million
- Wireless and Internet growth continues
Aliant Inc. (TSX: AIT) today reported its first quarter results. Consolidated revenues were $504.4 million, an increase of 0.7 per cent over the same period last year. Revenues were driven primarily by strong wireless and Internet results with year-over-year revenue growth of 18.3 per cent and 14.2 per cent, respectively, offsetting lower revenues in local and long distance. Net income applicable to common shares from continuing operations was $38.3 million, up 9.1 per cent from the same period last year, and earnings per share from continuing operations (EPS) of $0.29 were up 16.0 per cent due to growth in net income and the impact of share buyback programs.
Capital investments in the quarter totaled $84.8 million compared to $70.6 million in the first quarter of 2003. Through this investment, Aliant expanded its wireless 1xRTT data network to mirror its digital wireless coverage, doubled the speed of the 1xRTT network, expanded its broadband network, and continued the rollout of its IP network.
"Customer service is our top priority. Through the extraordinary efforts of our management team we continue to focus on delivering the highest possible levels of service during the current labour disruption," said Jay Forbes, President and CEO of Aliant.
Aliant's Board of Directors declared on April 29, 2004 a common share dividend of $0.275 per common share and a preferred share dividend of $0.340625 per preferred share, payable on June 30, 2004 to shareholders of record on June 15, 2004.
Given the immediate demands placed on management by the current labour disruption, the Board of Directors determined that it was in the best interest of the Company to postpone the annual meeting of shareholders, previously scheduled for May 18, 2004, to a future date to be announced.
First Quarter Financial Highlights
From its home base in Atlantic Canada, Aliant delivers a wide variety of innovative and traditional communications services, including local and long distance telephony, wireless, Internet, e-commerce, interactive multimedia, data and managed network services to more than two million consumers and over 80,000 enterprises. Aliant complements its industry-leading telecommunications business with strengths in advanced systems and information technology solutions and knowledge-services applications. The company's 9,000 employees build on Aliant's 100-plus year history by collaborating to deliver the highest quality of customer service, choice and convenience. Aliant is a TSX 100 company with a market capitalization of approximately $4 billion. More information about Aliant (TSX:AIT) may be found by visiting www.aliant.ca
Analyst conference call
A conference call with analysts is scheduled for April 30, 2004 at 8:30 a.m. (ET), (9:30 a.m. Atlantic, 10:00 a.m. N&L). The dial in number is 1-888-789-0150. Media are invited to attend in a listen mode. A replay of the analyst session can be heard between April 30, 2004 at 11:00 a.m. (ET) to May 6, 2004 at midnight (ET). To access the replay, dial 1-866-518-1010.
This news release contains forward-looking statements related to the future financial condition and results of operations of Aliant. These statements are based on current expectations and estimates about the markets in which Aliant operates and management's beliefs and assumptions regarding these markets. These statements are subject to important risks and uncertainties which are difficult to predict and assumptions which may prove to be inaccurate. Some of the factors which could cause results or events to differ materially from current expectations include but are not limited to: general economic conditions, market or business conditions; increased competition; changing regulatory conditions or requirements; changing technology; the outcome of collective bargaining; and success in implementing productivity initiatives; some of these factors are largely beyond the control of Aliant. Should any factor impact Aliant in an unexpected manner, or should assumptions underlying the forward-looking statements prove incorrect, the results or events predicted may differ materially from actual results or events. Consequently, all of the forward-looking statements made in this document are qualified by these cautionary statements, and there can be no assurance that the results or developments anticipated by Aliant will be realized or, even if substantially realized, that they will have the expected consequences for Aliant. Readers should not place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements. Further, Aliant disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or any other occurrence.
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Notes to the Financial Statements
Management Discussion and Analysis
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