CenturyLink lost more than $1 billion dollars in the third quarter thanks to a write-down associated with its data hosting sector. Excluding that, the company's profit was approximately $50 million.
The communications giant's profit in the year-ago quarter was $270 million.
The data-hosting segment actually grew revenue by nearly 5 percent, but CenturyLink said it was far behind previously predicted growth and cash flow, MarketWatch noted.
"We are taking steps to drive revenue growth and margins to be more in line with industry trends going forward and we expect to achieve significant improvement in our data hosting results in the months and years ahead," said CEO and President Glen F. Post III.
Revenue was down for the fifth quarter in a row, falling 1.2 percent, to $4.52 billion.
Losses in legacy services are still having an impact on CenturyLink. Growth in consumer-oriented services was moderate. It's number of high-speed Internet subscribers rose by 33,000, to more than 5.94 million. The company added 17,000 subscribers for its new Prism TV service.
The business-services segment grew. Strategic revenue was $640 million, up 6.3 percent from the year-ago quarter, driven by high-bandwidth offerings such as MPLS and Ethernet.
"Overall, we continue to perform well with particular strength in our business segment where sustained demand for high-bandwidth services and solid sales momentum continue to drive strong results," Post added.
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