CenturyLink’s Profit Shrinks on Acquisition-Related Costs

CenturyLink, Inc. on Wednesday reported fourth-quarter earnings of $109 million. That means its profit was basically cut in half from the year-ago period ($225 million).

Costs associated with several acquisitions contributed to weighing down CenturyLink’s fourth-quarter earnings. “Fourth quarter 2011 net income and diluted earnings per share reflect after-tax integration, severance, and retention costs associated with the Embarq, Qwest and Savvis acquisitions and costs associated with the early retirement of Qwest Corporation debt, which aggregated $42 million ($0.07 per share),” CenturyLink explained.

For the entire year, the nation’s third-largest fixed line telecommunications company reported net income of $573 million. That figure is down considerably from a $948 million profit in 2010.

Quarterly revenues skyrocketed to $4.653 billion from $1.722 billion in the year-ago period, thanks largely to CenturyLink’s 2011 acquisitions of Qwest Communications and Savvis. For the full year, operating revenues more than doubled to $15.4 billion from $7 billion.

CenturyLink acquired Embarq Corp. in July 2009, Qwest in April 2011 and Savvis in July 2011. The company said it fully integrated Embarq in the fourth quarter and noted that the integrations of Savvis and Qwest into its operations are on track.

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