Lumen Technologies Loses Nearly $2.3 Billion


Revenue, Sales Down

Lower revenue and a nearly $2.3 billion loss highlight Lumen Technologies‘ earnings report for the fourth quarter, the second since rebranding from CenturyLink.

The loss compares to a $223 million profit for the fourth quarter of 2019. Revenue was $5.1 billion, down from $5.3 billion in the year-ago quarter.

For the full year, Lumen Technologies‘ earnings includes a $1.23 billion loss, compared to a $5.27 billion loss for the prior year. Revenue was $20.7 billion, down from $21.4 billion.

Neel Dev is Lumen’s CFO. He said despite the decrease, it wasn’t as large as the drop from 2018 to 2019.

Lumen's Neel Dev

Lumen’s Neel Dev

“We continue to invest in the business with capital expenditures of $3.7 billion,” he said. “Over the course of 2020, we reduced net debt by approximately $1.6 billion and refinanced approximately $13 billion in long-term debt, further reducing interest expense, extending maturities and strengthening our balance sheet.”

Targeting Midmarket

Lumen‘s enterprise channel is narrowing its focus on larger enterprises, Dev said.

“We now have a sales channel focused specifically on midsize customers, which we are calling the midmarket channel,” he said. “Based on buying patterns and support requirements, some smaller customers previously included in the enterprise channel have moved to our midmarket channel. Within our wholesale channel, changes were limited to realignment of a few customer accounts.”

Jeff Storey is Lumen‘s president and CEO.

CenturyLink's Jeff Storey

Lumen’s Jeff Storey

“We delivered solid execution in 2020 as our employees quickly pivoted to the new operating environment and empowered our customers to meet their own rapidly changing environment,” he said. “It was a challenging year for our customers and our employees. The 2020 also highlighted the power, flexibility and scalability of our fiber-based offerings and the agility of our employees. I’m exceptionally proud of the team’s performance during difficult times.”

Looking forward, Storey said the launch of the Lumen platform sets a strong foundation for growth.

“Over the last several years, we’ve been focused on integrating, transforming and operationalizing the capabilities we bring to market,” he said. “With much of that work behind us, 2021 is about revenue growth and expanding adoption of our platform.”

Lumen invested in its edge cloud capabilities, enhanced its customers’ digital experiences and launched new platform-based solutions, Storey said.

“These investments enabled us to improve our revenue growth trajectory and serve as the foundation for several new strategic partnerships,” he said. “We are excited about the opportunity for growth in 2021 as we truly become the platform for amazing things.”

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