Verizon, the US multinational telco, reported revenues for 2018 were up 3.8 per cent and said it expects similar, low single-digit percentage growth in 2019. Capital expenditure will also increase this year as the operator ramps up its 5G roll-out.
Fourth-quarter revenues rose a tepid 1 per cent to $34.3 billion (€30.05) as a 5.3 per cent increase in hardware revenues offset a 0.1 per cent dip in service revenue.
Verizon’s EBITDA margin fell to 20.2 per cent in Q4 from 25.4 per cent a year earlier, dragged down by lower results at the wireline activities. The company said it’s on track to reach its target of $ =10 billion in cumulative cost savings by 2021, of which $2.8 billion was achieved already by the end of 2018. These came mainly from capital efficiencies, and capex was reduced to $16.7 billion from $17.2 billion the prior year.
Verizon lost fixed customers for all services in 2018, apart from the Fios fibre broadband, which grew by 3.7 per cent to 6.07 million subscribers. In Q4, broadband net additions were just 3,000, as the loss of 51,000 DSL customers offset growth of 54,000 Fios subscribers. Fios also lost another 46,000 TV subscribers and 30,000 voice customers in Q4. Total fixed voice connections fell 8.5 per cent over the year to 11.73 million.