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Press Release -- February 17th, 2016
Source: Earthlink
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EARTHLINK REPORTS STRONG FOURTH QUARTER AND FULL YEAR 2015 RESULTS

  • Revenue of $260.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2015 and $1,097.3 million for the full year 2015
  • Net loss of $(12.3) million, or $(0.12) per share, for the fourth quarter of 2015 and $(43.2) million, or $(0.42) per share, for the full year 2015
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $53.9 million for the fourth quarter of 2015 and $242.5 million for the full year 2015
  • Net cash provided by operating activities of $41.4 million for the fourth quarter of 2015 and $167.4 million for the full year 2015
  • Unlevered Free Cash Flow of $26.8 million for the fourth quarter of 2015 and $155.0 million for the full year 2015
  • Ending cash balance of $91.3 million

ATLANTA — Feb. 17, 2016 — EarthLink (EarthLink Holdings Corp., NASDAQ: ELNK), a leading network services provider dedicated to delivering great customer experiences, today announced financial results for its fourth quarter and full year 2015.

"2015 was a year of significant progress for EarthLink," said EarthLink Chief Executive Officer and President Joseph F. Eazor. "We executed on our business unit strategy and delivered strong financial performance as a result. Going into 2016 we are focusing on activities that pave the way to growth." Eazor also announced changes to EarthLink's Board of Directors. "Today we're also announcing that long-time EarthLink Directors David Koretz and Wayne Wisehart will be retiring from our Board of Directors prior to our annual stockholders meeting in April. We are grateful for their dedication and many contributions to EarthLink since 2008."

Fourth Quarter 2015 Financial Summary
Fourth Quarter 2015 Financial Summary

Revenue and Cost of Revenue

  • Total revenue was $260.2 million during the fourth quarter of 2015, a decline of 8.5% from the fourth quarter of 2014. Total revenue was $1,097.3 million during the full year 2015, a decline of 6.8% from the full year 2014.
  • Total Business Services revenue was $206.9 million during the fourth quarter of 2015, a decline of 8.3% from the fourth quarter of 2014. Total Business Services revenue was $877.9 million during the full year 2015, a decline of 5.7% from the full year 2014.
  • Total Business Services and company revenue during the fourth quarter of 2015 included $0.9 million of favorable settlements and adjustments compared to $3.9 million during the fourth quarter of 2014 and $1.2 million during the third quarter of 2015. Total company revenue during the full year 2015 included $5.9 million of favorable settlements and adjustments ($5.2 million in Business Services and $0.7 million in Consumer Services) compared to $10.7 million during the full year 2014 (all within Business Services).
  • Total Business Services and company cost of revenue during the fourth quarter of 2015 included $2.2 million of favorable settlements and adjustments compared to $3.9 million of favorable settlements during the fourth quarter of 2014 and $3.3 million during the third quarter of 2015. Total company cost of revenue during the full year 2015 included $12.3 million of favorable settlements and adjustments ($13.0 million favorable in Business Services, offset by $0.7 million unfavorable in Consumer Services) compared to $14.8 million during the full year 2014 (all within Business Services).

Net Loss and Adjusted EBITDA

  • Net loss was $(12.3) million during the fourth quarter of 2015. This compares to a net loss of $(22.5) million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and $(10.5) million in the third quarter of 2015. Net loss was $(43.2) million for the full year 2015 compared to a net loss of $(72.8) million for the full year 2014.
  • Adjusted EBITDA (a non-GAAP measure, see definition in "Non-GAAP Measures" below) was $53.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2015, a 1.3% increase from the fourth quarter of 2014 and a 12.2% decrease from the third quarter of 2015. Adjusted EBITDA was $242.5 million for the full year 2015 compared to $213.0 million for the full year 2014.

Balance Sheet and Cash Flow

  • Net cash provided by operating activities was $41.4 million during the fourth quarter of 2015. This compared to net cash provided by operating activities of $38.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and $74.0 million in the third quarter of 2015. Net cash provided by operating activities was $167.4 million for the full year 2015 compared to $140.0 million for the full year 2014.
  • Unlevered Free Cash Flow (a non-GAAP measure, see definition in "Non-GAAP Measures" below) was $26.8 million during the fourth quarter of 2015. This compared to Unlevered Free Cash Flow of $24.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and $39.4 million in the third quarter of 2015. Unlevered Free Cash Flow was $155.0 million for the full year 2015 compared to $110.2 million for the full year 2014.
  • EarthLink ended the fourth quarter of 2015 with $91.3 million in cash. During the fourth quarter of 2015, EarthLink made net repayments on gross outstanding debt of $5.0 million and dividend payments of $5.2 million. During the full year 2015, EarthLink made net repayments on gross outstanding debt of $91.1 million and dividend payments of $26.4 million.

Non-GAAP Measures
Adjusted EBITDA is defined as net income (loss) before interest expense and other, net, income taxes, depreciation and amortization, stock-based compensation expense, impairment of goodwill and long-lived assets, restructuring, acquisition and integration-related costs, loss on extinguishment of debt, and gain (loss) from discontinued operations, net of tax. Unlevered Free Cash Flow is defined as net income (loss) before interest expense and other, net, income taxes, depreciation and amortization, stock-based compensation expense, impairment of goodwill and long-lived assets, restructuring, acquisition and integration-related costs, loss on extinguishment of debt, and gain (loss) from discontinued operations, net of tax, less cash used for purchases of property and equipment.

Adjusted EBITDA and Unlevered Free Cash Flow are non-GAAP financial measures. They should not be considered in isolation or as an alternative to measures determined in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles. Please refer to the Consolidated Financial Highlights for a reconciliation of these non-GAAP financial measures to the most comparable measures reported in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles and Footnote 6 of the Consolidated Financial Highlights for a discussion of the presentation, comparability and use of such financial measures.

Conference Call for Analysts and Investors
EarthLink's Fourth Quarter 2015 Conference Call will be held on Thursday, February 18, 2016, at 8:30 a.m. ET. The conference call will be hosted by EarthLink's Chief Executive Officer and President Joseph F. Eazor and Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Louis M. Alterman.

The dial-in number is: (866) 887-3882.

Participants should reference the conference ID number 27956447 or "EarthLink Fourth Quarter 2015 Earnings Call" and dial in 10 minutes prior to the scheduled start time.

Webcast
A live Webcast of the conference call will be available at: http://ir.earthlink.net/.

Presentation
An investor presentation to accompany the conference call and webcast will be available
at: http://ir.earthlink.net/.

Replay
A webcast replay will be available from 11:30 a.m. ET on February 18, 2016 through midnight on March 17, 2016. Dial toll-free: (855) 859-2056. The replay confirmation code is27956447 . The Webcast will be archived on the company's website at: http://ir.earthlink.net/events.cfm.

Download the Fourth Quarter 2015 Earnings Financial Statements

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Cautionary Information Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release includes "forward-looking" statements (rather than historical facts) that are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described. Although we believe that the expectations expressed in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, we cannot promise that our expectations will turn out to be correct. Our actual results could be materially different from and worse than our expectations. With respect to such forward-looking statements, we seek the protections afforded by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These risks include, without limitation: (1) that we may not be able to execute our strategy to successfully transition to a leading managed network, security and cloud services provider, which could adversely affect our results of operations and cash flows; (2) that we may not be able to increase revenues from our growth products and services to offset declining revenues from our traditional products and services, which could adversely affect our results of operations and cash flows; (3) that if we are unable to adapt to changes in technology and customer demands, we may not remain competitive, and our revenues and operating results could suffer; (4) that failure to achieve operating efficiencies and otherwise reduce costs would adversely affect our results of operations and cash flows; (5) that we may have to undertake further restructuring plans that would require additional charges; (6) that we may be unable to successfully divest non-strategic products, which could adversely affect our results of operations; (7) that acquisitions we complete could result in operating difficulties, dilution, increased liabilities, diversion of management attention and other adverse consequences, which could adversely affect our results of operations; (8) that we face significant competition in our business markets, which could adversely affect our results of operations; (9) that failure to retain existing customers could adversely affect our results of operations and cash flows; (10) that decisions by legislative or regulatory authorities, including the Federal Communications Commission, relieving incumbent carriers of certain regulatory requirements, and possible further deregulation in the future, may restrict our ability to provide services and may increase the costs we incur to provide these services; (11) that if we are unable to interconnect with AT&T, Verizon and other incumbent carriers on acceptable terms, our ability to offer competitively priced local telephone services will be adversely affected; (12) that the continued decline in switched access and reciprocal compensation revenue will adversely affect our results of operations; (13) that failure to obtain and maintain necessary permits and rights-of-way could interfere with our network infrastructure and operations; (14) that if our larger carrier customers terminate the service they receive from us, our wholesale revenue and results of operations could be adversely affected; (15) that we obtain a majority of our network equipment and software from a limited number of third-party suppliers; (16) that our commercial and alliance arrangements may not be renewed or may not generate expected benefits, which could adversely affect our results of operations; (17) that our consumer business is dependent on the availability of third-party network service providers; (18) that we face significant competition in the Internet access industry that could reduce our profitability; (19) that the continued decline of our consumer access subscribers will adversely affect our results of operations; (20) that lack of regulation governing wholesale Internet service providers could adversely affect our operations; (21) that cyber security breaches could harm our business; (22) that privacy concerns relating to our business could damage our reputation and deter current and potential users from using our services; (23) that interruption or failure of our network, information systems or other technologies could impair our ability to provide our services, which could damage our reputation and harm our operating results; (24) that our business depends on effective business support systems and processes; (25) that if we, or other industry participants, are unable to successfully defend against disputes or legal actions, we could face substantial liabilities or suffer harm to our financial and operational prospects; (26) that we may be accused of infringing upon the intellectual property rights of third parties, which is costly to defend and could limit our ability to use certain technologies in the future; (27) that we may not be able to protect our intellectual property; (28) that we may be unable to hire and retain sufficient qualified personnel, and the loss of any of our key executive officers could adversely affect us; (29) that unfavorable general economic conditions could harm our business; (30) that government regulations could adversely affect our business or force us to change our business practices; (31) that our business may suffer if third parties are unable to provide services or terminate their relationships with us; (32) that we may be required to recognize impairment charges on our goodwill and other intangible assets, which would adversely affect our results of operations and financial position; (33) that we may have exposure to greater than anticipated tax liabilities and we may be limited in the use of our net operating losses and certain other tax attributes in the future; (34) that our indebtedness could adversely affect our financial health and limit our ability to react to changes in our business and industry; (35) that we may require substantial capital to support business growth, and this capital may not be available to us on acceptable terms, or at all; (36) that our debt agreements include restrictive covenants, and failure to comply with these covenants could trigger acceleration of payment of outstanding indebtedness; (37) that we may reduce, or cease payment of, quarterly cash dividends; (38) that our stock price may be volatile; (39) that provisions of our certificate of incorporation, bylaws and other elements of our capital structure could limit our share price and delay a change of control of the company; and (40) that our bylaws designate the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware as the sole and exclusive forum for certain types of actions and proceedings that may be initiated by our stockholders, which could limit our stockholders' flexibility in obtaining a judicial forum for disputes with us or our directors, officers or employees. These risks and uncertainties, as well as other risks and uncertainties that could cause our actual results to differ significantly from management's expectations, are not intended to represent a complete list of all risks and uncertainties inherent in our business, and should be read in conjunction with the more detailed cautionary statements and risk factors included in our Annual Report on Form 10-K.

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