Cincinnati Bell Reports First Quarter 2017 Results

HIGHLIGHTS
•     Revenue from strategic products totaled $165 million, up 9 percent compared to the prior year
•     Entertainment and Communications revenue totaled $195 million, up $5 million from a year ago - Fioptics revenue was up 26 percent year-over-year
•     Internet subscribers totaled 307,400, up 15,000 over the prior year
•     Acquired SunTel Services to expand CBTS' national footprint
•     Sold remaining 2.8 million shares of CyrusOne for proceeds of $141 million

CINCINNATI - May 9, 2017- Cincinnati Bell Inc. (NYSE:CBB) today announced financial results for the first quarter of 2017, highlighted by strategic revenues increasing $13 million over the prior year.  Fioptics video subscribers totaled 141,100 at the end of the first quarter, up 21,100 compared to the same period in 2016.  Fioptics internet subscribers totaled 207,300, up 42,800 compared to a year ago.  In the first quarter of 2017, we passed an additional 11,800 addresses with Fioptics, which is now available to 545,200 homes and businesses, or 68 percent of Greater Cincinnati. 

"Our fiber network and IT solutions business represent two distinct assets.  This team's ability to capitalize on the demand for these strategic assets is key to our future growth," said Leigh Fox, president and chief operating officer.  Fox also added, "We continue to execute on our long-term strategy.  We sold our remaining stake in CyrusOne and the acquisition of SunTel Services was an important step toward expanding the national footprint of our IT services."

CONSOLIDATED RESULTS
Consolidated revenue for the first quarter of 2017 was $278 million, down 4 percent from the prior year primarily due to the decline of Telecom and IT hardware sales.  Restructuring and severance related charges associated with cost-out initiatives resulted in an operating loss of $5 million for the quarter.  Adjusted EBITDA1 totaled $71 million during the first quarter of 2017.  Net income was $60 million, generating diluted earnings per share of $1.37.  In the first quarter of 2017, we recognized a $118 million gain on the sale of our remaining 2.8 million shares of CyrusOne.

Entertainment and Communications Segment
  • Entertainment and Communications revenue for the quarter totaled $195 million, up $5 million compared to the prior year.
    • Fioptics revenue for the quarter was $74 million, up 26 percent from the prior year.
    • Strategic revenue for business and carrier customers totaled $51 million for the quarter, up $4 million year-over-year. 
  • Operating loss for the quarter totaled $2 million, due to cost-out initiatives resulting in $26 million of restructuring and severance related charges.
  • Adjusted EBITDA for the quarter totaled $70 million, consistent with the prior year after excluding the impact of amortizing a post-retirement pension credit that ended in 2016. 

IT Services and Hardware Segment
  • Revenue for the quarter was $86 million, down $16 million compared to the prior year.
    • Strategic revenue was $44 million in the quarter, down from $48 million in the prior year.
    • Telecom and IT hardware revenue was $36 million for the quarter, compared to $48 million in the first quarter of 2016.
  • Operating income totaling $3 million for the quarter and Adjusted EBITDA of $6 million were down from the prior year, primarily as a result of the following: 
    • Decline of Telecom and IT Hardware sales,
    • Decreased professional services and management and monitoring revenue due to increased in-sourcing of IT professionals by our customer base, and
    • Increased costs associated with expanding our national footprint

2017 Outlook
Cincinnati Bell reaffirms its financial guidance for 2017:
 
Category 2017 Guidance
Revenue $1.2 billion
Adjusted EBITDA $295 million*

*Plus or minus 2 percent

Conference Call/Webcast
Cincinnati Bell will host a conference call on May 9 at 10:00 a.m. (ET) to discuss its results for the first quarter of 2017.  A live webcast of the call will be available via the Investor Relations section of www.cincinnatibell.com.  The conference call dial-in number is (800) 289-0572.  Callers located outside of the U.S. and Canada may dial (913) 981-5597.  A taped replay of the conference call will be available approximately one hour after the conclusion of the call until 1:00 p.m. on Tuesday, May 23, 2017.  For U.S. callers, the replay will be available at (888) 203-1112.  For callers outside of the U.S. and Canada, the replay will be available at (719) 457-0820.  The replay reference number is 4646239.  An archived version of the webcast will also be available in the Investor Relations section of www.cincinnatibell.com.

Safe Harbor Note
This release and the documents incorporated by reference herein contain forward-looking statements regarding future events and our future results that are subject to the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  All statements, other than statements of historical facts, are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements.  These statements are based on current expectations, estimates, forecasts, and projections about the industries in which we operate and the beliefs and assumptions of our management.  Words such as “expects,” “anticipates,” “predicts,” “projects,” “intends,” “plans,” “believes,” “seeks,” “estimates,” “continues,” “endeavors,” “strives,” “may,” variations of such words and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements.  In addition, any statements that refer to projections of our future financial performance, our anticipated growth and trends in our businesses, and other characterizations of future events or circumstances are forward-looking statements.  Readers are cautioned these forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and assumptions that are subject to risks and uncertainties, which could cause our actual results to differ materially and adversely from those reflected in the forward-looking statements.  Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, those discussed in this release and those discussed in other documents we file with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).  More information on potential risks and uncertainties is available in our recent filings with the SEC, including Cincinnati Bell's Form 10-K report, Form 10-Q reports and Form 8-K reports.  Actual results may differ materially and adversely from those expressed in any forward-looking statements. We undertake no obligation to revise or update any forward-looking statements for any reason.

Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures
This press release contains information about adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (Adjusted EBITDA), Adjusted EBITDA margin, net debt, net income excluding special items and free cash flow.  These are non-GAAP financial measures used by Cincinnati Bell management when evaluating results of operations and cash flow. Management believes these measures also provide users of the financial statements with additional and useful comparisons of current results of operations and cash flows with past and future periods.  Non-GAAP financial measures should not be construed as being more important than comparable GAAP measures.  Detailed reconciliations of these non-GAAP financial measures to comparable GAAP financial measures have been included in the tables distributed with this release and are available in the Investor Relations section of www.cincinnatibell.com.

1Adjusted EBITDA provides a useful measure of operational performance. The company defines Adjusted EBITDA as GAAP operating income plus depreciation, amortization, restructuring and severance related charges, (gain) loss on sale or disposal of assets, transaction costs, curtailment (gain) loss, asset impairments, components of pension and other retirement plan costs (including interest costs, asset returns, and amortization of actuarial gains and losses), and other special items.  Adjusted EBITDA should not be considered as an alternative to comparable GAAP measures of profitability and may not be comparable with the measure as defined by other companies.

Adjusted EBITDA margin provides a useful measure of operational performance.  The company defines Adjusted EBITDA margin as Adjusted EBITDA divided by revenue. Adjusted EBITDA margin should not be considered as an alternative to comparable GAAP measures of profitability and may not be comparable with the measure as defined by other companies.

Free cash flow provides a useful measure of operational performance, liquidity and financial health.  The company defines free cash flow as cash provided by (used in) operating activities, adjusted for capital expenditures, restructuring and severance related payments, preferred stock dividends, dividends received from CyrusOne (equity method investment), cash used in or (provided by) discontinued operations, including the decommission of wireless towers, and transaction costs.  Free cash flow should not be considered as an alternative to net income (loss), operating income (loss), cash flow from operating activities, or the change in cash on the balance sheet and may not be comparable with free cash flow as defined by other companies. Although the company feels there is no comparable GAAP measure for free cash flow, the attached financial information reconciles cash provided by operating activities to free cash flow.

Net debt provides a useful measure of liquidity and financial health.  The company defines net debt as the sum of the face amount of short-term and long-term debt, unamortized premium and/or discount and unamortized note issuance costs, offset by cash and cash equivalents.

Net (loss) income applicable to common shareholders excluding special items in total and per share provides a useful measure of operating performance.  Net (loss) income applicable to common shareholders excluding special items should not be considered as an alternative to comparable GAAP measures of profitability and may not be comparable with net income excluding special items as defined by other companies.

About Cincinnati Bell Inc.
With headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio, Cincinnati Bell Inc. (CBB) provides integrated communications solutions – including local and long distance voice, data, high-speed Internet and video – that keep residential and business customers in Greater Cincinnati and Dayton connected with each other and with the world.  In addition, enterprise customers across the United States rely on CBTS, a wholly-owned subsidiary, for efficient, scalable office communications systems and end-to-end IT solutions.  For more information, please visit www.cincinnatibell.com.