Wireless communications services provider Alltel (NYSE:AT) phones in its first-quarter 2007 results on April 27. For those listening, here's some of what's expected from the company.

What analysts say:

  • Buy, sell, or hold the line? A group of 31 analysts have something to say to investors about Alltel -- 11 of these recommend buying, a gang of 19 say hold, while one has a sell sign posted on the shares. Alltel also ranks as a three-star stock in our Motley Fool CAPS system, where 77 players have voiced their opinion on the company.
  • Revenue. Revenue is expected to drop 17% to $2.1 billion this quarter.
  • Earnings. Profits are expected to fall as well, with the average analyst expecting a 20% decline to $0.66 per share.

What management says:
To focus on high-growth, high-value services, Alltel has gone extreme and reformed itself into a wireless-only company in 2006. CEO Scott Ford says, "Alltel's evolution as a wireless-only carrier confirms the constancy of our underlying commitment to the stewardship of our shareholders' investment." By spinning off the wireline operations to shareholders in forming a separate company called Windstream (NYSE:WIN), the company aims to capitalize on its more than 10 million-strong subscriber base. Realizing value in the competitive wireless world means offering differentiated products and services that consumers love to use. To this end, Ford adds, "We launched a record number of information and entertainment services for businesses and consumers, including a mobile podcast service, XM Radio Mobile and location-based services."

What management does:
Alltel had a busy 2006, gyrating through several acquisitions and spinoffs to position the company to take on larger competitors Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ), Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S), and AT&T (NYSE:T). The company has so far shown it can still execute well on its core operations while it integrates the various operations under one umbrella. Alltel continues to sign up new customers at a solid clip while keeping churn in check. New data services such as the aforementioned radio service from XM Satellite Radio (NASDAQ:XMSR) also help maintain average revenue per user, or ARPU, figures as subscribers spend more on data and less on voice.

























Source: Alltel

One Fool says:
As Alltel begins to stabilize its business operations after a storm of M&A in 2006, investors will be looking for not just the stable metrics shown in the past, but improvements in each area going forward. But Wall Street has actually been less focused on Alltel's fundamentals lately and more focused on just who is going to buy the company and for how much. Persistent rumors have circled for more than a year now about a potential buyout from a competitor like AT&T or possibly a private equity group. With suitors circling a sleeker, sexier Alltel, investors will have to wait a little longer see if this makeover pays off.

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Fool contributor Dave Mock thinks his garage could benefit from an extreme makeover. He owns no shares of companies mentioned here. Dave is the author of The Qualcomm Equation. The Fool has a disclosure policy.