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Verizon Fends Off Competitors, Reports Higher-Than-Expected Q4 Revenue

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Fueled by aggressive promotions to fend off competitors, Verizon Communications reported higher-than-expected revenue for the fourth quarter of 2015.

Total operating revenues last quarter were $34.3 billion, a 3.2 percent increase over $33.2 billion in the year-ago quarter. Full-year 2015 operating revenue totaled nearly $132 billion, compared to $127 billion for the previous year.

Profit was $5.5 billion compared to a $2.1 billion loss in the fourth quarter of 2014. For the year, profit was $18.4 billion, compared to $12 billion for the previous year.

“In 2015, Verizon delivered strong and balanced results in a dynamic competitive environment while returning more than $13.5 billion to shareholders,” said Lowell McAdam, Verizon’s chairman and CEO. “At the same time, Verizon built and acquired next-generation network capabilities that position the company to be an innovator in the digital-first mobile world in 2016 and beyond.”{ad}

Verizon says its acquisitions of AOL and Millennial Media added capabilities that “significantly bolster” its strategy with strong cross-platform consumer and advertising offerings, particularly in mobile and video. In 2015, it launched the go90 mobile-first social entertainment platform, Custom TV options for FiOS customers, the hum direct-to-consumer telematics product, and the Thingspace suite of developer tools to advance the Internet of Things (IoT) market.

New revenue streams from IoT are growing, reaching approximately $200 million in the fourth quarter and about $690 million for the full year, showing a year-over-year increase of 18 percent.

Verizon Wireless ended the year with 112.1 million retail connections, a 3.6 percent year-over-year increase, and 106.5 million retail postpaid connections, a 4.4 percent year-over-year increase. 4G devices now constitute almost 80 percent of the retail postpaid connections base, with the LTE network handling about 90 percent of total wireless data traffic in the fourth quarter. Overall traffic on LTE increased by about 60 percent during the quarter, compared to fourth-quarter 2014.

In the wireline segment, consumer revenues totaled $4.1 billion, a 2.6 percent increase compared to fourth-quarter 2014. FiOS revenues grew 6.8 percent, to $3.5 billion, and consumer FiOS revenues grew 6.6 percent. Verizon added 99,000 net new FiOS Internet connections and 20,000 net new FiOS video connections during the quarter.

Verizon says its investments have also positioned the company to lead in the deployment of 5G wireless broadband.

“Verizon embraced transformational change in 2015, and in 2016 the company has a huge opportunity to drive a new era of growth in our industry,” McAdam said.


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