Shares of ATN International (NASDAQ:ATNI) have plunged today, down by 19% as of noon EST, after the company reported fourth-quarter earnings. While the bottom-line results topped expectations, challenges still remain going forward.
Revenue in the fourth quarter came in at $107.8 million, which translated into non-GAAP earnings per share of $0.08. Compare those results with consensus estimates, which called for $107.9 million in sales and an adjusted loss of $0.06 per share. The telecommunications company continues to face challenges in the U.S. market, even as it enjoys relatively stronger international performance. Total revenue in the U.S. fell by 29% to $24.9 million, while total international revenue grew 17% to $78 million.
"Results for the fourth quarter were mixed, with our International Telecom operations performing well, and our U.S. Telecom operations managing through difficult market conditions," CEO Michael Prior said in a statement. The chief executive also acknowledged that the decline in adjusted EBITDA for the U.S. business was "more pronounced than in prior periods."
ATN has been reducing costs, cutting domestic capital expenditures by 40% in 2018 in an effort to improve returns, Prior said. ATN was also awarded $80 million in funding over the next 10 years related to the Connect America Fund, a government program that seeks to bring wireless broadband connectivity to rural areas around the country. The company expects that funding to help its domestic results in the second half of 2019.
Prior added, "Looking ahead, our priorities for 2019 include generating momentum behind one or more of our U.S. Telecom growth initiatives, accelerating the business recovery in the US Virgin Islands, and delivering an increase in total cash flow from our International Telecom segment."