US mobile operator raises full-year outlook on customer additions

T-Mobile US added just over 1 million branded postpaid customers in the first quarter of this year, including 656,000 phone customers, exceeding the expectations of the financial newswires, and raised its guidance for the full year.

The US mobile operator posted its Q1 results following yet another meeting with the FCC regarding its proposed merger with rival Sprint.

According to a filing published by the regulator earlier this week, representatives from the two companies again discussed the benefits they see emerging from the deal, as well as answering questions from FCC officials.

The telcos were questioned on their economic modelling, pricing commitments, and the incentive for the merged company to aggressively lower prices. Intense competition among prepaid providers was discussed at the meeting, since those customers would benefit the most from the merger, the FCC said, as were other public interest concerns.

T-Mobile added 69,000 branded prepaid customers in Q1, less than half its net adds in Q1 last year. However, overall its customer base – including wholesale and M2M – grew by 1.65 million to 81.3 million.

It expects to book branded postpaid net additions of 3.1 million-3.7 million for the full year, having previously predicted 2.6 million-3.6 million.

The telco posted revenues of US$11.08 billion in Q1, up 6% on the year-ago quarter, while net income was up by 35% to $908 million and adjusted EBITDA grew by almost 12% to $3.28 billion.