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Shenandoah Telecommunications Company Reports Third Quarter 2020 Results

Posted 6 November 2020 12:00 AM by Shentel

EDINBURG, Va., November 6, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Shenandoah Telecommunications Company ("Shentel") (Nasdaq: SHEN) announced third quarter 2020 financial and operating results.

Third Quarter 2020 Highlights

• Strong Broadband data net additions of 6,000 with Glo Fiber contributing 1,500

• Executed Glo Fiber franchise agreements in six new markets in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia

• Launched fixed wireless broadband service in the counties of Albemarle and Rockingham, Virginia, in October 2020 under the brand name of Beam

• Acquired CBRS spectrum for $16.1 million

• As previously announced, T-Mobile exercised its option to purchase our Wireless segment on August 26, 2020

• The Wireless segment’s financial results will be presented as discontinued operations in the Company’s Consolidated Financial Statements effective with the date of the purchase option

• As previously announced, our Board of Directors declared a cash dividend of $0.34 per share representing a 17.2% increase over the 2019 dividend.

"Our Broadband business had another quarter of strong operating results with continued demand for our high speed Internet services. We are very excited by the early results of Glo Fiber with a record quarter of net additions and high customer interest following our launch of Beam in October. Based on our track record of success, we plan to accelerate our investments in these new initiatives to increase our Broadband addressable market to over 700,000 homes passed and serve as a catalyst for delivering sustainable long-term growth. Solid operating results along with our strong cash flow generation in 2020, supports returning value to our shareholders with our increased dividend," said President and CEO, Christopher E. French. "With T-Mobile’s exercise of the purchase option of our wireless business, we are focused on the upcoming Wireless appraisal process and the transition to a broadband centric company."

Shentel's third-quarter earnings conference call will be webcast at 8:30 a.m. ET on Friday, November 6, 2020. The webcast and related materials will be available on Shentel’s Investor Relations website at https://investor.shentel.com.

Wireless Update

• On April 1, 2020, T-Mobile announced the completion of its business combination with Sprint and subsequently delivered to the Company a notice of Network Technology Conversion, Brand Conversion and Combination Conversion (a "Conversion Notice") pursuant to the terms of the Company’s affiliate agreement with Sprint. On August 26, 2020, T-Mobile exercised its option to purchase all of the assets and operations of our Wireless segment for 90% of the Entire Business Value as defined under our affiliate agreement with Sprint PCS and determined pursuant to the appraisal process set forth therein. As described in more detail in the Company’s 2019 Annual Report on Form 10-K, our Wireless segment has been an affiliate of Sprint since 1999.

• On August 24, 2020, the Company delivered to T-Mobile a notice of dispute relating to the appraisal framework and other contractual terms related to T-Mobile’s acquisition of our discontinued Wireless operations. On November 3, 2020, the parties aligned in principle to resolve such disputed items including:

▪ The valuation date to be utilized by the appraisers will be July 1, 2020.

▪ The appraisers will assume the T-Mobile / Sprint merger did not occur, Shentel remains an affiliate of Sprint under the affiliate agreement with continued access to the brands and spectrum and all impacts from the Sprint / T-Mobile integration shall be disregarded.

▪ It is currently expected that the appraisers will complete their valuation of Entire Business Value on or about January 20, 2021.

▪ The transaction is currently expected to close in the second quarter of 2021, subject to timely completion of the appraisal process and receipt of customary regulatory approvals.

• The Wireless segment’s financial results will be presented as discontinued operations for all periods presented in the Company’s Consolidated Statements of Comprehensive Income and Cash Flows effective with the date of the purchase option. Prior comparative periods will also be retrospectively recast and presented as discontinued operations. The related assets and liabilities are presented as held for sale in the Company’s Consolidated Balance Sheets.

Consolidated Third Quarter 2020 Results

• Revenue in the third quarter of 2020 was $55.2 million compared with $51.8 million in the third quarter of 2019, due to the growth of $2.0 million and $1.4 million in the Broadband and Tower segments, respectively.

• Adjusted OIBDA in the third quarter of 2020 increased $2.5 million to $14.6 million compared with $12.1 million in 2019 due primarily to growth in Towers and a reduction in corporate expenses.

• Operating income was consistent with third quarter 2019.

• Earnings from continuing operations per diluted share grew $0.01 to $0.03 and earnings from discontinued operations grew 148.1% to $0.67 per diluted share from the same period a year ago.

Broadband

• Broadband Data Revenue Generating Units ("RGUs") grew 6,069 to end the third quarter 2020 with 98,764 or 19.8% year over year growth.

• Incumbent cable broadband added 4,598 Data RGUs in the third quarter 2020 and data penetration grew year over year from 40.0% to 46.2% driven by strong demand for high speed Internet and the enhanced value of our Powerhouse rate card. Churn declined 9 basis points year over year to 1.88% and included approximately 25 basis points of churn related to non-pay subscribers from the second quarter that were affected by Covid-19 for whom we temporarily suspended disconnection. Excluding the suspended non-pay disconnects, churn would have been 1.73%. Broadband average revenue per user ("ARPU") increased $0.19 to $77.66 in the third quarter 2020 compared to the prior year period driven by subscribers upgrading to rate plans with faster speeds.

• Glo Fiber added 1,471 Data RGUs in the third quarter 2020 and market penetration grew to 12.5% driven by strong demand for high speed Internet fiber-based services and differentiated local customer service. Broadband churn and ARPU were 0.98% and $80.25, respectively, in the third quarter 2020. Total Glo Fiber passings grew approximately 9,000 sequentially from the second quarter 2020 to 22,347.

• Broadband revenue in the third quarter of 2020 increased $2.0 million or 4.2% to $50.7 million compared with $48.7 million in the third quarter of 2019, primarily driven by a $3.8 million increase in Cable Residential and SMB revenue partially offset by a $0.9 million decrease in RLEC revenues and $0.5 million decline in Fiber Enterprise and Wholesale revenues. Cable Residential and SMB revenue growth was driven primarily by 19.8% year over year growth in broadband subscribers. Fiber Enterprise and Wholesale revenue decline was due to lower amortized revenue.

• Broadband operating expenses in the third quarter of 2020 were $41.2 million compared to $37.4 million in the third quarter of 2019. The increase was primarily due to increases in compensation expense of $2.3 million as a result of Glo Fiber and Beam start-up staffing and higher incentive accrual from strong operating results and $1.5 million increase in depreciation and amortization expense due to the expansion of our network.

• Broadband Adjusted OIBDA in the third quarter of 2020 decreased 1.3% to $19.6 million, compared with $19.9 million for the third quarter of 2019 due primarily to lower amortized Fiber Enterprise and Wholesale revenue from upfront fees and the dilution associated with start-up costs from Glo Fiber and Beam fixed wireless.

• Broadband Operating income in the third quarter of 2020 was $9.5 million, compared to $11.2 million in the third quarter of 2019.

Tower

• Total macro towers, small cells and tenants were 222, 8 and 414, respectively, as of September 30, 2020 as compared to 221, zero and 380, respectively, as of September 30, 2019.

• Tower revenue in the third quarter of 2020 grew 43.3% to $4.5 million, compared with $3.1 million for the third quarter of 2019. This increase was due to a 8.9% increase in tenants and a 37.9% increase in average revenue per tenant driven by amendments to intercompany leases effected in the first quarter of 2020.

• Tower operating expenses in the third quarter of 2020 was $2.1 million, compared to $1.8 million in the quarter of 2019.

• Tower Adjusted OIBDA in the third quarter of 2020 grew 42.9% to $2.9 million, compared with $2.0 million for the third quarter of 2019.

• Tower operating income in the third quarter of 2020 was $2.4 million, compared to $1.3 million for the third quarter of 2019.

Other Information

• Capital expenditures were $82.7 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2020 compared with $48.8 million in the comparable 2019 period. The $33.9 million increase in capital expenditures was primarily due to higher spending in the Broadband segment driven by our Glo Fiber market expansion.

• Outstanding debt at September 30, 2020 totaled $696.4 million, net of unamortized loan costs, compared to $720.1 million as of December 31, 2019. As of September 30, 2020, the Company had liquidity of approximately $259.1 million, including $75.0 million of revolving line of credit availability.

Free cash flow, normalized free cash flow and Adjusted OIBDA are non-GAAP financial measures that are not determined in accordance with US generally accepted accounting principles. Reconciliations of these non-GAAP financial measures are provided in this press release after the consolidated financial statements.

Conference Call and Webcast

Teleconference Information:

Date: November 6, 2020 Time: 8:30 A.M. (ET)

Dial in number: 1-888-695-7639

Password: 9885265

Audio webcast: http://investor.shentel.com/

An audio replay of the call will be available approximately two hours after the call is complete, through December 6, 2020 by calling (855) 859-2056.

About Shenandoah Telecommunications

Shenandoah Telecommunications Company (Shentel) provides a broad range of diversified communications services through its high speed, state-of-the-art wireless, cable, fiber optic and fixed wireless networks to customers in the Mid-Atlantic United States. The Company’s services include: wireless voice and data; broadband internet, video, and digital voice; fiber optic Ethernet, wavelength and leasing; telephone voice and digital subscriber line; and tower colocation leasing. Shentel is the exclusive personal communications service ("PCS") Affiliate of Sprint in a multi-state area covering large portions of central and western Virginia, south-central Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and portions of Maryland, Kentucky, and Ohio. For more information, please visit www.shentel.com.

This release contains forward-looking statements that are subject to various risks and uncertainties. The Company's actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements as a result of unforeseen factors. A discussion of factors that may cause actual results to differ from management's projections, forecasts, estimates and expectations, is available in the Company’s filings with the SEC. Those factors may include natural disasters, pandemics and outbreaks of contagious diseases and other adverse public health developments, such as COVID-19, changes in general economic conditions, increases in costs, changes in regulation and other competitive factors.

CONTACTS:

Shenandoah Telecommunications Company

Jim Volk

Senior Vice President - Chief Financial Officer

540-984-5168

Jim.Volk@emp.shentel.com

Or

John Nesbett/Jennifer Belodeau

IMS Investor Relations

203-972-9200

jnesbett@institutionalms.com

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