|Crown Castle Reports First Quarter 2017 Results and Raises Outlook for Full Year 2017|
"Given the expected substantial increase in mobile data demand over the coming years, we are excited about the opportunities for growth we see as a result of our position as a leading provider of wireless infrastructure in the US," stated Jay Brown, Crown Castle’s Chief Executive Officer. "Our tower business continues to see steady levels of activity in the short term. Over the longer term, we believe there is an extended runway of growth driven by positive industry developments, including the deployment of FirstNet and spectrum from the recently completed incentive auction. In our small cells business, our contracted pipeline has reached record levels, with nearly 25,000 nodes expected to be installed over the next 18 to 24 months, reflecting the confidence our customers have in our ability to assist in deploying their wireless networks. Once completed, this pipeline will double the number of small cell nodes we have installed to date. To prepare for this anticipated level of activity, we continue to invest in assets supporting our small cell deployments, such as our recently announced agreement to acquire Wilcon, as well as our node installation capabilities, including the hiring of additional employees. As we scale our organization to increase production toward our goal of 10,000 nodes per year, we will incur additional costs that have been reflected in our full year 2017 Outlook. We believe these investments will allow us to extend our position as a leading provider of wireless infrastructure while generating attractive returns on our investments and delivering sustained growth in dividends per share."
RESULTS FOR THE QUARTER
"The first quarter marked another strong quarter of execution as we exceeded the high end of our guidance for site rental revenues, site rental gross margin, Adjusted EBITDA and AFFO," stated Dan Schlanger, Crown Castle's Chief Financial Officer. "Driven by the strong results from the first quarter and expected continued healthy leasing activity across both towers and small cells, we are increasing our full year 2017 Outlook. We believe the strength of our business, our flexible capital structure and our low cost of capital position us to continue to deliver consistent growth while allowing us to pursue attractive growth opportunities that we believe will drive long-term growth in dividends per share."
The following table sets forth Crown Castle's current Outlook for second quarter 2017 and full year 2017:
Full Year 2017 and Second Quarter 2017 Outlook
The table below compares the results for full year 2016, the midpoint of the current full year 2017 Outlook and the midpoint of the previously provided full year 2017 Outlook for select metrics.
CONFERENCE CALL DETAILS
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ABOUT CROWN CASTLE
Non-GAAP Financial Measures and Other Calculations
This press release includes presentations of Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted Funds from Operations ("AFFO"), Funds from Operations ("FFO"), and Organic Contribution to Site Rental Revenues, which are non-GAAP financial measures. These non-GAAP financial measures are not intended as alternative measures of operating results or cash flow from operations (as determined in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles ("GAAP")).
Our measures of Adjusted EBITDA, AFFO, FFO, Organic Contribution to Site Rental Revenues, Segment Site Rental Gross Margin, Segment Network Services and Other Gross Margin and Segment Operating Profit may not be comparable to similarly titled measures of other companies, including other companies in the tower sector or other REITs. Our definition of FFO is consistent with guidelines from the
Adjusted EBITDA, AFFO, FFO, and Organic Contribution to Site Rental Revenues are presented as additional information because management believes these measures are useful indicators of the financial performance of our business. Among other things, management believes that:
In addition to the non-GAAP financial measures used herein, we also provide Segment Site Rental Gross Margin, Segment Network Services and Other Gross Margin and Segment Operating Profit, which are key measures used by management to evaluate our operating segments for purposes of making decisions about allocating capital and assessing performance. These segment measures are provided pursuant to GAAP requirements related to segment reporting. In addition, we provide the components of certain GAAP measures, such as capital expenditures.
We define our non-GAAP financial measures and other measures as follows:
Adjusted EBITDA. We define Adjusted EBITDA as net income (loss) plus restructuring charges (credits), asset write-down charges, acquisition and integration costs, depreciation, amortization and accretion, amortization of prepaid lease purchase price adjustments, interest expense and amortization of deferred financing costs, gains (losses) on retirement of long-term obligations, net gain (loss) on interest rate swaps, gains (losses) on foreign currency swaps, impairment of available-for-sale securities, interest income, other income (expense), benefit (provision) for income taxes, cumulative effect of a change in accounting principle, income (loss) from discontinued operations and stock-based compensation expense.
Adjusted Funds from Operations. We define Adjusted Funds from Operations as FFO before straight-lined revenue, straight-line expense, stock-based compensation expense, non-cash portion of tax provision, non-real estate related depreciation, amortization and accretion, amortization of non-cash interest expense, other (income) expense, gain (loss) on retirement of long-term obligations, net gain (loss) on interest rate swaps, gains (losses) on foreign currency swaps, acquisition and integration costs, and adjustments for noncontrolling interests, and less capital improvement capital expenditures and corporate capital expenditures.
Funds from Operations. We define Funds from Operations as net income plus real estate related depreciation, amortization and accretion and asset write-down charges, less noncontrolling interest and cash paid for preferred stock dividends, and is a measure of funds from operations attributable to CCIC common stockholders.
Organic Contribution to Site Rental Revenues. We define the Organic Contribution to Site Rental Revenues as the sum of the change in GAAP site rental revenues related to (1) new leasing activity including revenues from the construction of small cells and the impact of prepaid rent, (2) escalators and less (3) non-renewals of customer contracts.
Discretionary capital expenditures. We define discretionary capital expenditures as those capital expenditures made with respect to activities which we believe exhibit sufficient potential to enhance long-term stockholder value. They consist of (1) improvements to existing wireless infrastructure and construction of new wireless infrastructure (collectively referred to as "revenue generating") and (2) purchases of land assets under towers as we seek to manage our interests in the land beneath our towers.
Sustaining capital expenditures. We define sustaining capital expenditures as either (1) corporate related capital improvements, such as buildings, information technology equipment and office equipment or (2) capital improvements to tower sites that enable our customers' ongoing quiet enjoyment of the tower.
Segment Site Rental Gross Margin. We define Segment Site Rental Gross Margin as segment site rental revenues less segment site rental cost of operations, excluding stock-based compensation expense and prepaid lease purchase price adjustments recorded in cost of operations.
Segment Network Services and Other Gross Margin. We define Segment Network Services and Other Gross Margin as segment network services and other revenues less segment network services and other cost of operations, excluding stock-based compensation expense recorded in cost of operations.
Segment Operating Profit. We define Segment Operating Profit as segment revenues less segment cost of operations and segment general and administrative expenses, excluding stock-based compensation expense and prepaid lease purchase price adjustments recorded in cost of operations.
The tables set forth below reconcile the non-GAAP financial measures used herein to comparable GAAP financial measures. The components in these tables may not sum to the total due to rounding.
Reconciliations of Non-GAAP Financial Measures to Comparable GAAP Financial Measures and Other Calculations:
Reconciliation of Historical Adjusted EBITDA:
Reconciliation of Current Outlook for Adjusted EBITDA:
Reconciliation of Historical FFO and AFFO:
Reconciliation of Current Outlook for FFO and AFFO:
For Comparative Purposes - Reconciliation of Previous Outlook for Adjusted EBITDA:
For Comparative Purposes - Reconciliation of Previous Outlook for FFO and AFFO:
The components of changes in site rental revenues for the quarters ended March 31, 2017 and 2016 are as follows:
The components of the changes in site rental revenues for the year ending December 31, 2017 are forecasted as follows:
Components of Historical Interest Expense and Amortization of Deferred Financing Costs:
Components of Current Outlook for Interest Expense and Amortization of Deferred Financing Costs:
Debt balances and maturity dates as of March 31, 2017 are as follows:
Net Debt to Last Quarter Annualized Adjusted EBITDA is computed as follows:
Components of Capital Expenditures:
This press release contains forward-looking statements and information that are based on our management's current expectations. Such statements include our Outlook and plans, projections, and estimates regarding (1) potential benefits, returns and shareholder value which may be derived from our business, assets, investments, dividends and acquisitions, including on a long-term basis, (2) our strategy, strategic position and strength of our business, (3) carrier network investments and upgrades, and the benefits which may be derived therefrom, (4) demand for mobile data and wireless connectivity and the benefits which may be derived therefrom, (5) our growth and long-term prospects, (6) leasing activity, pipeline of deployment commitments for our wireless infrastructure and our ability to respond to, deploy or produce with respect thereto, (7) our investments, including in towers, small cells, our capabilities and other assets, and the potential growth, returns and benefits therefrom, (8) our annual small cell node production, (9) our dividends, including our dividend plans and the amount and growth of our dividends, (10) demand for our wireless infrastructure and services, (11) our capital structure, (12) tenant non-renewals, including the impact and timing thereof, (13) capital expenditures, including sustaining capital expenditures, (14) seasonal and timing items, including repair and maintenance expense, sustaining capital expenditures and tax payments, (15) straight-line adjustments, (16) expenses and cost structure, (17) site rental revenues, (18) site rental cost of operations, (19) site rental gross margin, (20) network services gross margin, (21) net income (loss), (22) Adjusted EBITDA, (23) interest expense and amortization of deferred financing costs, (24) FFO, (25) AFFO, (26) Organic Contribution to Site Rental Revenues and Organic Contribution to Site Rental Revenue growth, (27) our common shares outstanding, including on a diluted basis and (28) the utility of certain financial measures, including non-GAAP financial measures. Such forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions prevailing market conditions and the following:
Should one or more of these or other risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those expected. More information about potential risk factors which could affect our results is included in our filings with the SEC. As used in this release, the term "including," and any variation thereof, means "including without limitation."
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Dan Schlanger, CFO
CROWN CASTLE INTERNATIONAL CORP.
CROWN CASTLE INTERNATIONAL CORP.
CROWN CASTLE INTERNATIONAL CORP.
CROWN CASTLE INTERNATIONAL CORP.