Sprint posts its first quarterly profit in three years

After Charter rebuffed an overture over the weekend that would essentially have the No. 2 cable company buy SoftBank’s No. 4 US wireless carrier, Sprint, Bloomberg said that Son will try to buy Charter outright and combine it with Sprint.”Analysts see tremendous financial benefits to a Sprint-T-Mobile deal, if regulators would go along”.The company said it had 88,000 postpaid phone additions during the quarter, the eighth consecutive period of expansion.”We’ve had sufficient conversations with several parties and soon we’re going to start making decisions”, Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure said on a call Tuesday after the company reported results for the three months ending June 30.The profit is largely a result of thousands of job cuts a year ago, which trimmed $4 billion from the Kansas-based company’s operating costs. “This represents the progress of a turnaround journey that has delivered improvements in postpaid phone and prepaid customer growth, a return to top-line growth, and a significantly transformed cost structure”. The wireless communications company posted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.05, compared with a net loss a year ago of $0.08 per share.Under the failed 2014 merger of Comcast (No. 1 U.S. cable operator) and Time Warner (No. 2), Charter was going to buy Time Warner systems in Ohio and Kentucky, including Greater Cincinnati, Southwestern Ohio and Northern Kentucky. The company is having discussions with other companies, he said.The merger proposals come as the wireless industry prepares another technology cycle, known as Fifth Generation, or 5G, and T-Mobile and Sprint, the third- and fourth-largest carriers, respectively, will require additional capital. But striking a deal with a deep-pocketed partner has become much more hard over the last two years as Sprint has seen its stock rise.Sprint’s shares are up at $8.45 – a 5.89% climb – in morning trading Tuesday.The offer being considered by Sprint’s chairman and SoftBank founder, Masayoshi Son, would be to form a new publicly traded entity that would use SoftBank money to buyout shareholders of both Sprint and Charter at a premium, the people said.Revenue rose about 2 percent to $8.16 billion, missing the $8.19 billion analysts expected, according to Zacks. The spokesman also turned down requests for comments on whether the negotiations would continue or whether a different price would perhaps regain Charter’s interest in a possible buy out.Doing so would combine Charter’s more than 23 million landline broadband customers, and more than 17.1 million pay TV subscribers, with a wireless company looking for assets to compete with vertically integrated giants Verizon and AT&T.