Friday, May 4, 2012

Alltel & Commnet: Alive & Well

Atlantic Tele-Network (ATNI), the owners of Alltel Wireless and Commnet Wireless released a fairly rosy financial report for the 1st quarter of 2012.  ATNI reports some growth but they are more pleased with the reduction in the rate of losing customers. They show growth in the Prepaid segment but they don't report how much is attributed to Alltel or the new Choice Wireless. This strength in the prepaid area should be bolstered by their new plan to offer the "U" Prepaid in cooperation with US Cellular at Wal-Mart stores in each carrier's local coverage areas.

One of the brightest spots is in the "wholesale" branch which is primarily operated by Commnet Wireless but also should include roamers on the Alltel network.  While Commnet was forced to reduce some of their incoming roaming rates, they benefit from the increase of data usage in all of the ATNI Coverage areas.  ATNI also has wireless operation in the Caribbean.

This means, for the time being, ATNI, Alltel, Commnet and Choice should be able to survive as an independent cellular company, and Wall Street agrees by bidding up the company's stock. One of the company's 'secrets' is that they have gone from being a thorn in the side of the national carriers, to an operating partner, including 'filling in' coverage in areas where other carriers fear to tread.

If they can make the money-work, so can the net-work.

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