NTELOS +17%; Sprint deal extended to 2022, dividend axed

|About: NTELOS Holdings Corp. (NTLS)|By:, SA News Editor

NTELOS (NTLS +17.7%) has extended its network wholesale deal with Sprint through 2022. NTELOS "will continue to serve as the exclusive network provider for Sprint" in territory covering 2.1M people in Virginia and West Virginia.

Sprint will gain access to NTELOS' 4G network, and NTELOS will be able to use Sprint's 800/1900/2500 MHz. spectrum in the region.

Along with the announcement, NTELOS discloses it's eliminating its $0.42/share quarterly dividend, and is cutting its 2014 adjusted EBITDA forecast to $128M-$135M from $140M-$150M. 2015 adjusted EBITDA is expected to be flat Y/Y.

NTELOS plans to spend $150M-$175M to upgrade its network to meet Sprint's requirements (it'll be "substantially complete" by 2017). It plans to spend $110M-$125M on capex in 2015.

The Street had been pessimistic about NTELOS' renewal terms, as a recent FBR note demonstrates.