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Alltel achieves record customer growth for the fourth quarter, full year


WEBWIRE

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Alltel achieved record customer growth in the fourth quarter and for the full year, with the company adding more than 1 million gross customers for the first time in a quarter. Alltel also achieved records in total net customer additions and post-pay net adds in the fourth quarter, boosted by improvements in customer churn for the eighth consecutive quarter.

In 2007, Alltel completed its merger with an affiliate of TPG Capital and GS Capital Partners and ceased trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

“While Alltel’s ownership has changed, our focus remains the same – continuing to strike the balance between growing value for our shareholders over the long-term while continuing to provide outstanding service for our customers,” said President and Chief Executive Officer Scott Ford.

Among the highlights for the fourth quarter:

* Revenues were $2.3 billion, a 9 percent increase from the same period a year ago. The company reported a net loss of $525 million, due primarily to $619 million of pre-tax costs associated with the merger.

* Alltel added just over 1 million gross customers through internal growth, a 14 percent increase from a year ago. Internal net additions were 342,684, a 50 percent increase from a year ago. Post-pay churn was 1.34 percent and total churn was 1.81 percent, year-over-year improvements for the eighth consecutive quarter.

* Average revenue per wireless customer (ARPU) was $54.59, up 3 percent from last year. Data revenue per customer reached a new high of $6.74, a 63 percent increase year-over-year.

* Adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) was $767 million, a 9 percent increase from the same period a year ago.

A table describing adjusted EBITDA and reconciled net income to adjusted EBITDA is included in the schedules accompanying this release.

Among the highlights for the year:

* Revenues were $8.8 billion, a 12 percent increase from 2006 and a new record for the wireless business. Net income was $183 million, which includes the impact of $653 million of pre-tax merger-related costs.

* Alltel added 3.6 million gross customers through internal growth, a 9 percent increase from 2006. Net customer additions through internal growth were 965,831, a 51 percent increase from the previous year. Post-pay churn was 1.28 percent and total churn was 1.79 percent, both improvements from the previous year.

* ARPU was $54.30, up 3 percent from 2006. Data revenue per customer was $5.87, a 67 percent increase from the previous year.

* Adjusted EBITDA was $3.1 billion, a 12 percent increase.



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