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Sprint Corporation (S)

  • Fri, Oct. 2, 2:59 PM
    • AT&T (T -0.4%) has a letter in to the FCC noting that while it awaits a waiver from the FCC to offer Wi-Fi calling services -- a more notable service deficiency with the advent of Apple's iOS9 -- Sprint (S +4%) and T-Mobile (TMUS +0.1%), along with Google's Project Fi, are offering such services without such a waiver.
    • AT&T had planned to offer Wi-Fi calling in September, but filed a waiver related to TTY support regulations (as such assistance for the hearing- and speech-impaired can be tricky to provide over some Wi-Fi). The agency hasn't provided such a waiver yet, "even while our competitors provide those services in defiance of the commission's rules," AT&T writes.
    • The carrier is pressing for a granted waiver "without further delay."
    | Fri, Oct. 2, 2:59 PM | 25 Comments
  • Thu, Oct. 1, 6:46 PM
    • Sprint (S +5.5%) is going to cut an ambitious $2B to $2.5B in costs -- including jobs -- over the next six months, The Wall Street Journal reports from a memo written by Sprint's new CFO.
    • It's implementing an external hiring freeze and the cost cuts "inevitably will result in job reductions," writes Tarek Robbiati, who took over the CFO post in early August.
    • “The main thing to consider when requesting to spend money is to take an owner’s mindset by treating every dollar as if it were your own," he continues in the memo. The finance department will be approving all expenditures.
    • The communication didn't put a number to job cuts, but the company employed about 31K people at the end of March.
    • After hours, Sprint stock is up another 0.3% to add on to today's gains.
    | Thu, Oct. 1, 6:46 PM | 42 Comments
  • Wed, Sep. 30, 5:15 PM
    • Sprint (S +2.7%) is going to kick up the cost of its unlimited data plan, formerly $60/month, to $70/month, showing that unlimited data plans may be testing sustainability at the wireless carriers.
    • That's still the best U.S. postpaid deal for that plan, and current customers will be grandfathered in at the $60/month rate. The price changes for new customers Oct. 16.
    • T-Mobile (TMUS +0.6%) sells an unlimited data plan for $80/month, and AT&T (T +1.5%) and Verizon (VZ -0.1%) don't offer one.
    • Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure has alluded to the strain of unlimited data, as well as wishes to bump customers toward the tiered data plans.
    • Earlier, Sprint pursued limiting video download speeds, but has removed such restrictions as customers pushed back.
    | Wed, Sep. 30, 5:15 PM | 36 Comments
  • Tue, Sep. 29, 4:18 PM
    • After slipping 7.4% yesterday, and trading flat for much of today, Sprint (NYSE:S) took  the last hour to fall another 6%.
    • At $3.74, it's at its lowest point in seven weeks (since Aug. 10). The moves are coming in the wake of two key catalysts: an extreme discount on getting new iPhones into customers' hands, and its decision to skip the broadcast incentive spectrum auction at a time of clogged airwaves.
    • This is the "valley of darkness" for Sprint, analyst Roger Entner says, where it will live "for another year before improvements will be widely recognized by consumers.”
    • The company will save some $9B by skipping the spectrum auction -- important, as cash burn speeds up -- though Sprint is already sitting on a heavy supply of unused spectrum. Now the key is putting it to work.
    • Ultimately, Entner thinks some turnaround will happen: “There’s no way SoftBank (OTCPK:SFTBY) is going to let them go belly up." Wells Fargo's Jennifer Fritzsche thinks the onus is on getting those unused airwaves into service: “Sprint is still a show-me story, especially on the network side."
    • Previously: Sprint confirms it'll skip spring broadcast airwaves auction (Sep. 28 2015)
    • Previously: On eve of iPhone launch, Sprint offers $1/month plan (Sep. 24 2015)
    • Previously: Evercore: Sprint, T-Mobile could merge network assets into a REIT (Sep. 22 2015)
    | Tue, Sep. 29, 4:18 PM | 35 Comments
  • Mon, Sep. 28, 7:55 PM
    • Sprint (S -7.3%) confirmed that (as expected) it won't take part in the FCC's broadcast incentive auction for wireless spectrum next March -- a move that should suit T-Mobile's (NYSE:TMUS) John Legere just fine, as he's vocally argued for low-band access.
    • "Sprint has the spectrum it needs to deploy its network architecture of the future," said CEO Marcelo Claure in his statement. The company's already densifying the network and pursuing techniques like carrier aggregation to unlock potential in its 2.5 GHz position.
    • The auction, for prized low-band airwaves that will help with indoor penetration and rural areas, won't be cheap -- so skipping it should make a major difference to cash burn, a vital issue for Sprint.
    • After an August run to $5.19, fueled by SoftBank's share purchases, shares are back under $4, at $3.98 (down 21.5% since Aug. 28).
    • Previously: Sprint's Claure: Turnaround is taking hold with customer, network growth (Sep. 17 2015)
    • Previously: Wells Fargo: T-Mobile, Sprint get edge with new iPhone financing approach (Sep. 10 2015)
    | Mon, Sep. 28, 7:55 PM | 26 Comments
  • Thu, Sep. 24, 7:24 PM
    • With wireless carriers fighting over new iPhone deals seemingly every few hours, Verizon (NYSE:VZ) is responding to the scrum with Sprint and T-Mobile and now offering customers a program to upgrade their iPhone annually.
    • So long as users have paid off at least half their device's cost and turn in their current device, they'll be eligible to upgrade each year without waiting for their contract to end.
    • "If you’re not interested in upgrading, you still have the option to pay your phone off in 24 low monthly payments," Verizon says in its release, warning about "surprise balloon payments" with competitors.
    • Customers who pre-ordered the iPhone 6s or 6s Plus under Verizon's Device Payment installment option are automatically enrolled.
    • Earlier, T-Mobile (NYSE:TMUS) introduced an iPhone lease plan as low as $5/month, and Sprint (NYSE:S) responded with an all-night number crunch to create today's $1/month lease plan.
    • In after-hours action: VZ +0.1%; S -0.2%; TMUS unchanged.
    | Thu, Sep. 24, 7:24 PM | 25 Comments
  • Thu, Sep. 24, 3:04 PM
    • Upping the iPhone ante with a day to go before the newest model's launch, Sprint (S +0.5%) has responded to a T-Mobile $5/month promotion by announcing a $1/month device plan.
    • Friday's launch "is the day a lot of consumers choose who's going to be their carrier," says Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure. "We wanted to make sure we have the best iPhone offer."
    • The carrier, seeing "heatlhy" pre-order action, is offering a 16 GB iPhone 6s for $1/month with a trade-in of an iPhone 6 (last year's model). The rate goes to $5/month when getting an iPhone 6s Plus.
    • T-Mobile (TMUS -1.6%) yesterday had offered $5/month and $10/month leases for the two models when trading in last year's iPhone or certain other late-model phones.
    • Promotions for the new phone have seen a lot of action this month since Apple announced it was offering its own financing for unlocked iPhones.
    • Previously: T-Mobile seeing heavy iPhone demand, pushing $5/month lease (Sep. 23 2015)
    • Previously: Wells Fargo: T-Mobile, Sprint get edge with new iPhone financing approach (Sep. 10 2015)
    | Thu, Sep. 24, 3:04 PM | 27 Comments
  • Tue, Sep. 22, 7:24 PM
    • With most observers thinking any theoretical merger between T-Mobile (TMUS -1.1%) and Sprint (S +0.3%) would have to wait until a new U.S. administration (and John Legere saying "Oh yeah ... the only possible coming together of Sprint and T-Mobile is if we pick them up off the sidewalk"), analysts at Evercore say the two could combine network assets.
    • It would be a sort of a merger, into a new company (a REIT in particular) that would hold their network resources. Bigger investments at lower cost would come, along with a speedier network once spectrum assets were blended.
    • Given up, of course, would be the chance to differentiate, and snipe the rival over network power.
    • Combined, the two control 255 MHz of spectrum, more than the 147 MHz at AT&T (T -0.9%) or the 116 MHz of Verizon (VZ -0.9%). A new "NetCo" would rent the network back to the two, as well as possibly others, and support MVNO customers.
    • As a final entry in the "pro" column, the analysts note a combined network would make any future merger more headache-free.
    | Tue, Sep. 22, 7:24 PM | 21 Comments
  • Tue, Sep. 22, 12:46 PM
    • Traffic checks of U.S. wireless carriers by Pacific Crest's Michael Bowen show slowness for the leaders and some momentum for challengers.
    • Verizon (VZ -1%) was "slow" and AT&T (T -0.9%) "somewhat weak" in the past month heading into a key iPhone announcement. Verizon saw a lower amount of pre-orders for the iPhone and was coming off a data plan re-sizing; AT&T is lower-key about pushing phone upgrades, though tablet promotions are going well and customers are responding to DirecTV bundles.
    • Meanwhile, promotions are bearing fruit at T-Mobile (TMUS -1.9%) and Sprint (S -1%). T-Mobile traffic was "strong," Bowen says, with employees optimistic about iPhone pre-orders and new financing plans. Meanwhile, most Sprint stores met or beat August goals and expect the same for September, as the "iPhone forever" leasing plan is showing strong demand.
    | Tue, Sep. 22, 12:46 PM | 31 Comments
  • Fri, Sep. 18, 4:56 PM
    | Fri, Sep. 18, 4:56 PM | 4 Comments
  • Thu, Sep. 17, 6:53 PM
    • Speaking at Communacopia, CEO Marcelo Claure says one clear sign that a turnaround is taking hold at Sprint (NYSE:S) is that the firm has added postpaid handset subscribers for four months straight, the first time in 40 months that it's managed such a string.
    • He's also softening the timeline a bit for network improvement, now saying he wants Sprint's network ranked No. 1 or No. 2 in 80% of major markets by the end of 2017.
    • "I think from a network perspective we're getting better dramatically," he said, noting that its network, pricing and new handset leasing approach should help churn continue to improve.
    • "Virtually all" of Sprint's macro cell sites are going to be upgraded to support 800 MHz, 1900 MHz and 2.5 GHz for LTE, he said, and the company will deploy thousands of new macro sites and tens of thousands of small cells.
    • He added a decision is coming in the next few weeks about whether Sprint will take part in the broadcast incentive auction for 600 MHz spectrum.
    | Thu, Sep. 17, 6:53 PM | 14 Comments
  • Wed, Sep. 16, 12:06 PM
    • Sprint (NYSE:S) is down 5.2%, with its bondholders kneecapped by a Moody's credit-rating cut that has slashed more than $1.5B from the bonds.
    • The rating cut -- to B3 from B1, six notches below investment grade -- came due to "brutal competition" in U.S. wireless, and skepticism about Sprint's ability to refinance a $12B debt pile coming due over the next five years.
    • "The negative outlook reflects our belief that Sprint is going to need significant additional funding," Moody's wrote. "It remains uncertain whether or not the capital markets will be receptive to additional funding."
    • The company's 7.875% notes due 2023 have fallen to 90.75 cents on the dollar, from 98.6 cents at the week's start.
    | Wed, Sep. 16, 12:06 PM | 26 Comments
  • Fri, Sep. 11, 2:09 PM
    | Fri, Sep. 11, 2:09 PM | 31 Comments
  • Thu, Sep. 10, 3:20 PM
    • Aside from the usual feature hype of Apple's new iPhones, it's the company's new financing plans that throw an interesting wrinkle at service providers, who have usually financed phones -- and some analysts figure T-Mobile (TMUS +0.6%) and Sprint (S -1.2%) have an edge with the new arrangement.
    • Wells Fargo's Jennifer Fritzsche notes the two have cheaper ways of getting the phone: T-Mobile's monthly offering of $20-$24/month, even with optional insurance of $8/month, still beats Apple's cheapest $32/month by $4. Meanwhile, Sprint's 24-month "iPhone forever" offering is $22/month (or even cheaper, $15/month, for those jumping this year).
    • The carriers have more comprehensive insurance as well, since AppleCare doesn't cover lost or stolen phones.
    • Switching carriers gets easier with Apple's new approach, to which leaders AT&T (T -0.1%) and Verizon (VZ +0.1%) are most vulnerable, she says. “However, we note that the vast majority (90%+) of T and VZ’s customer base is on corporate or family plans, which tend to be the stickiest customers.”
    • Meanwhile, at T-Mobile, John Legere is now pushing a "lifetime coverage guarantee" that offers refunds for device payments for unhappy iPhone 6s and 6s Plus buyers who use the carrier's Jump On Demand device plan, along with getting an unlocked device.
    • Previously: Sprint up 3.4% as it introduces plan to upgrade iPhones anytime (Aug. 17 2015)
    | Thu, Sep. 10, 3:20 PM | 19 Comments
  • Tue, Sep. 1, 2:05 PM
    • Sprint (NYSE:S) says it's investing $150M in Chicago by the end of 2016, nearly doubling its headcount there with more than 750 new jobs and up to $250M of network spend across Chicagoland over the next two years.
    • Chicago will be the first Sprint city to see deployment of LTE-Advanced.
    • The new jobs -- building on the existing "Sprint for Chicago" initiative to improve customer service, which promised 300 new jobs in March -- include retail positions, wireless experts for the company's house-call "Direct 2 You" service, and network techs and engineers.
    • Meanwhile, boosted by continuing SoftBank support, Sprint shares are bucking today's sharply lower market, up 0.5% while the S&P 500 is down 2.5%.
    | Tue, Sep. 1, 2:05 PM | 14 Comments
  • Mon, Aug. 31, 5:04 PM
    | Mon, Aug. 31, 5:04 PM | 8 Comments
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Company Description
Sprint Corp is a communications company offering wireless and wireline communications products and services to individual consumers, businesses, government subscribers and resellers.