NII Profit Slides, but Shares Up

NII Holdings' profit slid 34 percent in the first quarter, but its shares are still trading up about 8.5 percent this morning as it beat analysts' estimates.

Profit fell 33.9 percent, to $70.6 million (43 cents a share) from $106.8 million (62 cents), while revenue dropped just 3 percent, to $961.3 million. The company sells Nextel brand mobile phone services in Latin America and was hurt by lower exchange rates. But it added 266,000 net subscribers in the quarter, to give it 6.5 million - 28 percent more than on March 31, 2008. NII expanded its coverage into the northeast part of Brazil in the first quarter.

Churn grew to 2.1 percent, higher than the 1.8 percent level a year earlier, as the economies of some of the countries it serves struggled.

"The demand for our services met our expectations as evidenced by healthy levels of gross additions, but the weaker economies in some of our markets, particularly in Mexico and Argentina, caused an increase in churn," said chief executive Steve Dussek.

NII earlier this month revised its outlook for subscriber additions to a net 1.1 million to 1.2 million, from 1.275 million to 1.35 million. It's keeping its financial predictions at their previous level for now, though.

Shares are trading higher today but are down about 60 percent over the past year.



By Terri Rupar  |  April 23, 2009; 11:29 AM ET  | Category:  Economy Watch , Technology
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