SoftBank's Son: Sprint is 'showing definitive signs of a turnaround'

Sprint (NYSE: S) "is showing definitive signs of a turnaround," SoftBank Chairman Masayoshi Son said, according to Bloomberg. And its budget will continue to get leaner.

Son, speaking at a press conference announcing SoftBank's quarterly earnings, indicated its beleaguered U.S. operator may be past its darkest days. That would be welcome news for parent SoftBank, which saw its shares plummet 18 percent over four days in January due to concerns Sprint won't be able to pay its debts.

That slide followed reports that Sprint had finalized plans for a dramatic network overhaul that would move its equipment to government-owned land and transition to microwave technology rather than fiber-optic cables for backhaul. But Sprint later eased concerns over those plans during its own quarterly earnings call, with CEO Marcelo Claure saying "the information wasn't correct."

Sprint reported a sold quarter two weeks ago, adding 501,000 net postpaid users and an adjusted EBITDA of $19 billion, far outpacing Wall Street estimates. The carrier posted a net loss of $836 million, down from a loss of $2.38 billion a year earlier.

The company also saw the highest number of postpaid ports in its history, indicating the aggressive 50 percent-off campaign it launched in November was effective during the holiday season. And Sprint continues to cut costs, recently slashing 2,500 jobs in a third round of layoffs. The operator hopes to save as much as $2.5 billion by cutting costs in every area from marketing, payroll, and capital and operational expenditures.

For more:
- see this Bloomberg report
- see this Wall Street Journal story

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