In 2018, T-Mobile will acquire 60% of all new postpaid phone customers in the industry, analysts predict

T-Mobile's Signature store in Times Square, NYC
T-Mobile operates a flagship store in New York's Time Square. (T-Mobile)

Following T-Mobile’s heady performance in the wireless industry in 2017, analysts are predicting much of the same this year.

“After taking nearly two thirds of postpaid phone net add share in 2017 (even with Cable’s entry into Wireless), we think TMUS is on track to take a similar amount of share (DBe: 60%+) in 2018,” wrote the analysts at Deutsche Bank Markets Research in a note issued to investors yesterday after T-Mobile reported its quarterly results and offered its outlook for the coming year. “Simply put, TMUS remains our top Telecom pick, and we believe the recent stock pull back creates a very attractive buying opportunity in a high-quality story.”

In its earnings report, T-Mobile predicted it would gain a total of 2-3 million total customers during the course of 2018—a figure that most analysts considered a low bar that the operator would easily surpass.


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“As we look forward to 2018, we view TMUS’s 2-3MM postpaid subscriber add guidance as conservative (although we note T has indeed become more aggressive in the marketplace),” wrote the analysts at Wells Fargo in a note issued to investors yesterday after T-Mobile reported its quarterly results. “We would expect the sub guidance to have upward bias (we are modeling above the high-end at 3.05MM). We estimate TMUS can translate these subscriber adds into ~7% revenue growth, ~9% ‘core’ EBITDA growth and ~31% FCF growth.”

Specifically, Wells Fargo predicted T-Mobile would report a total of 3.051 million postpaid net customer additions in 2018. Similarly, the analysts at Deutsche Bank predicted T-Mobile would gain 3.068 million postpaid net additions during the year.

The analysts at Jefferies agreed, writing in a note to investors this morning that “it is no surprise that management would issue conservative guidance, it was more a function of magnitude. Street estimates are at the high end of the 2-3mn net add outlook, though we note that postpaid adds have exceeded the high end of initial guidance by ~1.3mn, ~700k, and ~220k, in 2015-2017, respectively.”

Indeed, T-Mobile today sought to continue its momentum in the market with a new offer that starts tomorrow. The company said it will offer a free line of service to new and existing customers who add one line of service to a family plan. That buy-one, -get-one-free offer on lines of service can also be coupled with T-Mobile’s BOGO offers on some of its smartphones.

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