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Home » Sprint’s (S) CEO Dan Hesse on Q1 2014 Results – Earnings Call Transcript

Sprint’s (S) CEO Dan Hesse on Q1 2014 Results – Earnings Call Transcript

Source: Seeking Alpha


Sprint Corporation (NYSE:S)

Q1 2014 Earnings Conference Call

July 30, 2014 08:30 am ET


Brad Hampton – Vice President of Investor Relations

Dan Hesse – Chief Executive Officer

John Saw – Chief Technology Operator

Joe Euteneuer -Chief Financial Officer


Kevin Smithen – Macquarie

Amir Rozwadowski – Barclays

Jennifer Fritzsche – Wells Fargo

John Hodulik – UBS

Jonathan Chaplin – New Street

Michael Rollins – Citi Investment

Tim Horan – Oppenheimer


Good morning. My name is Christie, and I will be your conference operator today. At this time, I would like to welcome everyone to the Sprint Fiscal First Quarter Earnings Conference Call. After the speakers’ remarks, there will be a question-and-answer session. Thank you.

Mr. Brad Hampton, VP of Investor Relations, you may begin your conference.

Brad Hampton – Vice President of Investor Relations

Thank you, Christie. Good morning, everyone and welcome to Sprint’s quarterly earnings call. On today’s call, Dan Hesse will discuss operational performance in the quarter. John Saw will provide an update on the network and Joe Euteneuer will cover financial results. After that, we will open up the call to your questions.

Before we get underway, let me remind you that our release, quarterly investor update and presentation slides that accompany this call, are all available on the Investor Relations page of the Sprint website.

Slide 2 is our cautionary statement. I want to point out that in our remarks this morning we will be discussing forward-looking information, which involves a number of risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from our forward-looking statements. We provide a comprehensive list of risk factors in our SEC filings, which I encourage you to review, including our annual and quarterly reports.

Turning to Slide 3, throughout our call, we will refer to several non-GAAP metrics. Reconciliations of our non-GAAP performance and liquidity measures to the appropriate GAAP measures for the quarter can be found in the attachments to our earnings release and also at the end of today’s presentation, which are available on our website at

Let’s move on to our earnings on Slide 4, please. Financial results include a predecessor period for the second calendar quarter of 2013 related to the results of operations of Sprint Communications Incorporated, formerly Sprint Nextel prior to the closing of the SoftBank transaction on July 10, 2013, and the applicable successor periods.

In order to present financial results in a way that offers investors a more meaningful comparison of the year-over-year quarterly results, we have combined the second calendar quarter 2013 results of operations for the predecessor and successor periods.

The following remarks relating to second quarter calendar of 2013 are in reference to an unaudited combined period, unless otherwise noted. Trended financial performance metrics on a combined basis can also be found at our Investor Relations website at

As announced earlier this year, Sprint changed its fiscal year end to March 31st. Making this our first fiscal quarter of 2014. However, for ease of comparison to ease of comparison to prior periods, any references to the first quarter ended June 30, 2014 on today’s call, will be referred to as our second calendar quarter.

Net income for the quarter was $23 million compared to a net loss of approximately $151 million last quarter and $1.7 billion in the second quarter of 2013. Total depreciation and amortization was approximately $1.3 billion for the quarter, consistent with last quarter and compared to $1.6 billion in the year ago period.

As you may recall, 2013 included accelerated depreciation, primarily related to the shutdown of the Nextel network and certain legacy 3G equipment. We had a net tax benefit of $15 million in the quarter, due to a decrease in valuation allowance on deferred tax assets, resulting from the planned disposition of certain FCC licenses. We expect net tax expense of $140 million to $180 million for the calendar year.

Lastly, although Clearwire’s financial results are now consolidated with Sprint’s and included in today’s presentation, its standalone quarterly financial results will be available on our website in the next several weeks as required by its debt covenants.

I will now turn the call over to Sprint’s CEO, Dan Hesse.

Dan Hesse – Chief Executive Officer

Thanks Brad. We appreciate everyone joining us this morning. Thanks for your interest in Sprint. Let me start by touching on the operational highlights of the quarters.

Turning to Slide 6, our net income of $23 million for the quarter represents our best performance in almost seven years; excluding one-time non-cash transaction related impacts reported last year.

Adjusted EBITDA of $1.83 billion represents growth of 30% year-over-year and our adjusted EBITDA margin of almost 24% is up over six percentage points compared to last year, our largest year-over-year growth on record. This marks the 12th consecutive quarter we have exceeded or matched the Street consensus expectation for adjusted EBITDA.

I’m pleased to report; we hit all of the key network deployment mid-year targets. Sprint LTE service now reaches 254 million people. The multi-year rip and replacement of our core voice and 3G platform is now largely complete and HD voice service is now available nationwide.

Given our strong HD voice call quality and continued improvements in the customer experience, including network performance, which John will discuss later, we currently or we recently reinstituted the Sprint satisfaction guarantee, the opportunity for customers to try Sprint for 30 days worry free.

Finally in keeping with our track record of innovation, during the quarter we launched exclusive new devices and mobile content into high demand consumer lifestyles segments music and fitness.

I will focus the balance of my remarks this morning on our unchanging priorities generating cash, improving the customer experience and strengthening the brand.

Please turn to Slide 7. We ended the second quarter with cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments of $5.5 billion. We delivered operating income of $519 million, our second consecutive quarter of positive operating income and our best operating income performance for any quarter in over seven years.

Joe will take you through the drivers of our adjusted EBITDA performance shortly, but as we have discussed with you in recent quarters, we remain focused on cost management and driving efficiency in the business, even as we fund sizable investments in our network.

We’ve made notable year-over-year progress in reducing expenses in areas like customer care, selling expenses and roaming expenses, contributing to wireless adjusted EBITDA growth of almost 40% year-over-year and service margin of over 25%. This represents an almost eight percentage point increase in wireless adjusted EBITDA margin over the year ago quarter.

Please turn to Slide 8, and the customer experience. We continue to set performance records in our customer care operations. I’m pleased to report that in 2014’s, American Customer Satisfaction Index released in May, Sprint is the most improved U.S. company in overall customer satisfaction across all 43 industries over the last six years.

The second quarter represents our 22nd consecutive quarter of improved performance and lower costs in customer care. In our postpaid business calls per customer to care and care credits granted to customers both, again best ever levels and each improved on a year-over-year basis for the 22nd consecutive quarter.

Turning to Slide 9, as I have discussed in detail on the last couple of calls and as expected, our postpaid churn continues to be elevated as we work through the significant construction impacts associated with the rip and replacement of our entire 3G and voice network. This intense network overhaul impacts the performance of our voice and data service, while the infrastructure is being replaced and thus negatively impacts our customers’ experience, which we had improved from industry-worst to industry-best levels before the construction began.

The impact to the voice call experience is the largest driver of the elevated churn we are experiencing during the construction. As I have discussed last quarter churn elevates during the construction period, but begins to stabilize once we reach 70% complete with the voice and 3G replacement in the market.

Market-level churn improvements correlate strongly with the number of months that market has been 70% or more complete, for example consistent with what I reported to you last quarter, in markets where we have been 70% or more complete for seven months or longer, consumer voluntary churn in the second quarter was 14 basis points lower than market 70% complete for fewer than seven months.

The typical customer makes or receives 80% of their calls on their top five towers. For markets 70% complete for 7 to 10 months, customers with their top five towers complete had six additional basis point of churn improvement. Customers with their top towers complete in markets 10 months or more after getting 70% complete saw another 16 basis points of churn improvement or 36 basis points in lower voluntary churn than customers and markets 70% complete for less than seven months. This gives us the confidence that voluntary churn will eventually go below pre-Network Vision project levels.

In just a few minutes, John, will share with you the substantial progress we are seeing in our network performance. Given the progress on our network, we continue to expect improvement in consumer voluntary churn in the second half of the calendar year and beyond.

Current trends for the third quarter indicate we could see our best second to third quarter sequential voluntary churn improvement on record. Over the last five-plus years, we’ve experienced an average seasonal churn increase of approximately 20 basis points from the second to the third quarter.

By sequentially reducing voluntary churn, we now expect to mitigate half of that normal seasonal increase as we look to the third quarter and we would expect further improvement in the fourth quarter as customers have more time to experience improved network performance.

Please turn to Slide 10. Sprint’s platform gross adds were up 16% on a year-over-year basis and in spite of our network headwinds, we estimate we held our postpaid share of gross adds roughly flat, sequentially. We innovate relentlessly at Sprint. We are granted an average of over two U.S. patents every business day. We focus our innovation across five major platforms. Technology, markets, content, services and corporate responsibility and today I would like to update you briefly on two of these areas.

Please turn Slide 11. Sprint Spark is our key technology innovation platform. Among the five elements that makes Spark such a powerful network evolution platform, 8 transmit, 8 receive at the base station, which we demonstrated for many of you in Chicago in June, 4×2 downlink, multiple-in multiple-out on devices, Time-Division Duplex LTE and Tri-Mode high-definition voice capable devices.

The most powerful differentiator is fully utilizing the deep spectrum resources acquired with Clearwire via 3x carrier aggregation.

As previously announced, we expect 2x carrier aggregation capable devices with peak speeds in excess of 100 megabits per second once we turn up 2x in the network later this year, but even faster will be 3x carrier aggregation.

I’m pleased to announce that leveraging our strong relationship with QUALCOMM; we are accelerating availability of 3x carrier aggregation capable handsets from the second half of 2015 to the first half of 2015. 3x carrier aggregation should give us peak data speeds in excess of 150 megabits per second to the device, preceding as many 3x capable devices in the first half of 2015 with customers in advance of turning 3x capabilities on in our network will allow us to bring these capabilities to far more customers when 3x is activated in our network late in 2015.

Please turn to Slide 12. Content is another innovation platform. During the second quarter, we announced and rolled out content in the key consumer lifestyle segments of music and fitness. In music, the launch of our exclusive agreements with Spotify and HDtracks paired with a groundbreaking HTC One M8 Harman/Kardon edition, bring an unprecedented high quality audio experience to smartphones.

In fitness, we launched a collaboration with Under Armour to add even more utility to Sprint’s exclusive Samsung G S5 Sports handsets. [Penetration] continues to grow and we believe our rates could be more competitive in certain segments. We are currently testing a number of new price plans, so that we can choose price structures which could be the most effective for possible future rate plan refresh.

As we assess the heightened postpaid competitive environment any changes to our competitive positioning will be balanced with our focus on growing long-term shareholder value. A test period will give us time to make even more network progress as we prepare for the peak selling period in the fourth quarter.

Given the churn improvements we are experiencing, we now expect to achieve postpaid net subscriber growth in the fourth quarter of the year. I am also pleased to announce another service innovation that will change the way Americans buy prepaid wireless.

If you turn to Slide 13, today, we are launching Virgin Mobile Custom, a fully customizable no contract plan with rich parental controls, which we will offer exclusively at Walmart.

Virgin Mobile Custom allows customers to build their own individually tailored plans. Customers can choose from a world wide range of texting, calling and data options to build plans that suit their individual needs and customers are able to change their plan anytime directly from the device, helping them manage their wireless and only pay for what they need.

The technology platform from ItsOn enables the most comprehensive parental controls available setting curfews for texting, limits for surfing or blocking of any sites. Immediately following our call today, we have a video available on our IR website that demonstrates the benefits of this innovative office. I strongly encourage you to take a look.

In conclusion, on Slide 14, we produced yet another strong earnings improvement quarter and customer service improvement quarter. We have launched innovative Framily offers with new partners like Harman and Spotify in music and with Under Armour in fitness.

We have met our LTE build targets and launched HD voice in the Sprint guaranty nationally. We demonstrated Sprint Spark’s innovative 8T8R radios and action and we are accelerating the timetable for 3x career aggregation capability in devices.

Our senior team has recently visited 14 of our markets together. Even though the complete rip and replacement of the network has been a difficult experience for them and for their customers, our people could not be more enthusiastic about our recent network progress and for selling Sprint services.

One of my teammates who accompany me on these visits is our Chief Network Officer, John Saw, who will now discuss our network progress. John?

John Saw – Chief Technology Operator

Thank you, Dan. I’m pleased to be with you today to discuss our significant progress on America’s newest network. As Dan mentioned, we delivered on our three key milestones for mid-year. We are now substantially complete with the rip and replacement of our legacy voice and 3G Network.

In addition, we beat our 4G LTE commitment to cover more than 250 million POPs by the end of June and now cover approximately 254 million LTE POPs. We also delivered nationwide availability of high definition or HD voice by mid-year, with over 40% of our postpaid base currently on HD voice-enabled handsets.

Building an entirely new network from the ground up has been a challenging task, but we now have a strong foundation to innovate on and to bring more capabilities and services to our customers.

With a completely new platform in place, we are now shifting our focus to three key priorities. Firstly, we will enhance our voice coverage by continuing to add more 800 megahertz to our footprint.

Secondly, we will strengthen our LTE service with improved coverage of 800 megahertz LTE and highest speeds and capacity with our 2.5 gigahertz LTE builds.

Thirdly, we will relentlessly focus on network quality and optimization to ensure an optimal experience for all our customers. In the past few months, we have doubled down on our efforts to improve on our customers’ experience on our network.

We are focusing more resources in the field, where our engineers are working individual sell-side, buy-sell side to ensure that they are all performing at optimum levels. Our goal is not only to deliver the best ever performance for our customers, but ultimately deliver best-in-class performance for them. We are beginning to see the fruits of our labor.

Turning to Slide 17, as I mentioned last quarter, we are seeing significant improvement in voice blocks and drops as we upgrade to 1.9 gigahertz network to the latest technology and equipment. We also now have roughly two-thirds of our voice footprint turned up on 800 megahertz and expect the deployment of voice on 800 megahertz to be substantially complete by the end of the year in markets where spectrum rebounding is finished.

When you consider that over 60% of our postpaid base is on 800 megahertz voice enabled handsets, these has an immediate benefit to our base as we turn up more 800 megahertz. The icing on the cake is the launch of our nationwide HD voice service, so not only should our customers expect to have better voice performance, but also exceptional voice quality and clarity.

We are delighted that Sprint has the most improved voice network in 14 major markets, including New York and Chicago based on independent third-party testing of dropped and blocked performance over the past few months.

Shifting gears to data, I am pleased with the team for expanding LTE footprint to more than 250 million people by the end of the quarter as it gives us a good foundation to build on as we expand the Sprint Spark experience.

Sprint Spark is currently in 27 markets and we have 22 Sprint Spark capable devices in market. We continue to expect to cover 100 million people with LTE on the 2.5 gigahertz band by the end of the year and we are excited to have begun the installation of 8 transmit, 8 receive or 8T8R radios, which should significantly improve the coverage and speeds of our 2.5 gigahertz TDD LTE service.

By the end of the year, we expect to have capabilities four two-channel career aggregation in 2.5 gigahertz spectrum band giving us added capacity and even the data speeds. In addition, we continue to make good progress on the deployment of LTE on 800 megahertz, which now reaches more than one-third of our footprint.

Sprint Spark also received the 2014 Leading Lights award for most innovative 4G service. Just as encouraging is the significant improvement in data performance over the last quarter as independent third-party testing showed sequential improvement in our data performance.

In addition, you can see in Slide 18 that RootMetrics testing at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago showed a significant 20 times improvement in Sprint’s LTE speeds between the test in September 2013 and the latest test in May 2014. This is the Sprint Spark experience that we want to replicate nationwide.

Also, in the following slide Page 19, our own internal benchmarking shows Sprint as having the most improved data collection rates in the past three months. Our focus on quality and optimization also applies to our capital spending as we reevaluate where our resources are focused while we wind down the Network Vision build.

We are also leveraging SoftBank and our vendors to collaborate on ways to deploy the network on a more capital-efficient basis.

When moving more traffic to our expanded LTE footprint, we are also able to spend less on 3G capacity than we had planned. A network is never done, but we are excited about the improved performance our customers are experiencing as we shift our attention to the evolution and optimization of our multi-band platform.

Our commitment to continuously improve our network means fewer dropped calls and a better broadband data experience for our customers.

I will now turn it over to Joe to take you through the financials.

Joe Euteneuer

Thank you, John. Good morning, everyone. We continued the momentum in margin improvements as Dan mentioned leading to higher operating profits and net income. We remain committed to improving the efficiency of our wireless business from driving cost out as we continue to invest for future growth.

Moving to Slide 21, Sprint platform postpaid net subscriber losses were 181,000 in the quarter, driven by elevated churn levels. Sprint platform postpaid churn was 2.05% in the quarter, down from 2.11% last quarter, but up from 1.83% a year ago as we continued to experience network headwinds in a competitive retail market.

We added 535,000 postpaid tablets in the quarter as we continued to grow existing accounts in our base, offset by declines in handset customers of 646,000 and other mobile broadband customers of 70,000. In the quarter 7.2% of our Sprint platform postpaid base upgraded devices in line with last quarter.

Smartphones represented 94% of postpaid handset sales in the quarter and now account for 84% of our postpaid handset base. In addition, we now have over 55% of our Sprint platform postpaid base on LTE devices, including over 66% of our Sprint platform postpaid smartphone base being on LTE devices. Also, 28% of all postpaid devices sold in the quarter, selected the installment billing option remaining relatively flat to last quarter.

As we foreshadowed last quarter, Sprint platform prepaid experienced net losses of 542,000 customers in the quarter, primarily related to assurance due to recertification of the base and growth impacted by the recent implementation of the National Lifeline Accountability Database. It has had a negative impact on the gross adds and will likely temper the growth of this program not only for us, but also for the industry going forward.

We are pleased with the growth of Boost and the response to the new rate plans. In fact, Boost had the highest ever gross adds on the Sprint platform since it launched in 2007. Also an affiliate net additions of 503,000 were primarily driven by connected devices and marks the fourth consecutive quarter of growth in this business.

Moving to revenue wireless service revenue of $7.1 billion was down sequentially and year-over-year as continued declines in postpaid service revenues were only partially offset by increases in wholesale revenues, however wireless operating revenues remained relatively flat year-over-year as the introduction of installment billing shifted revenues from service revenue to equipment revenue.

Sprint platform postpaid ARPU was $62.07 in the quarter compared to $63.52 last quarter and $64.20 a year ago. The declines are primarily driven by higher tablet mix in the base as well as migration to Framily plans partially offset by lower customer discounts and credit and higher revenues from our handset insurance products, however it is important to note for comparability purposes if you add monthly equipment billings then the equivalent Sprint platform ARPU would be down only 1% year-over-year.

Sprint platform prepaid ARPU of $27.38 grew 4%, sequentially, and 2% year-over-year as the basement shifts to the higher ARPU Boost and Virgin brands.

Wireline revenues declined 3%, sequentially, driven by international revenues while the 18% decline year-over-year was a result of our cable voice-over-IP migration, voice volume declines and the annual intercompany rate refresh, with the intercompany impact being neutral to consolidated adjusted EBITDA.

Please turn to Slide 22. Consolidated adjusted EBITDA of $1.83 billion was up $425 million from the year ago period and flat, sequentially. The year-over-year increase is driven by the continued improvement in our wireless adjusted EBITDA of $1.7 billion, which improved by nearly $500 million posting margins over 25% for the second consecutive quarter.

Sequentially, the net benefit to EBITDA from installment billing was less than last quarter as the impact to equipment revenue was flat on a consistent mix in volume. While there was a cumulative impact the service revenues and bad debt.

The expansion of wireless adjusted EBITDA margins is partially offset by wireline adjusted EBITDA, which declined year-over-year to $35 million, again, driven by migration and the annual intercompany rate refresh which is neutral consolidated adjusted EBITDA.

Consolidated operating income of $519 million was up 24%, sequentially, and improved by more than $1.4 billion year-over-year. The year-over-year improvement is due to the significant improvement in EBITDA as I just mentioned as well as lower depreciation expense as the year ago period included accelerated depreciation related to iDEN and legacy CDMA.

Moving to Slide 23, wireless equipment net subsidy in the quarter was $1.1 billion, which remained relatively flat sequentially. Year-over-year, net subsidy improved $426 million as equipment revenue was up $286 million year-over-year, primarily due to the introduction of installment billing for devices while cost of products down $140 million, mostly due to higher mix of tablet sales and lower volumes.

As we discussed last quarter, under Sprint Easy Pay, customers are billed for their device over 24 months and we recognize the equipment revenue less the imputed interest, at the same time as the expense.

Wireless cost of service of $2 billion, improved $243 million year-over-year, primarily due to the elimination of network expenses related to the Nextel platform, lower roaming expenses and lower backhaul expenses, partially offset by the net impact of the Clearwire acquisition.

Sequentially, Wireless cost of service improved $57 million, primarily as a result of lower network modernization spend, including backhaul savings as we continued migration to Ethernet and eliminated T1s.

Wireless SG&A expenses of $2.2 billion, improved $101 million year-over-year and improved $80 million, sequentially. The improvements were driven by continued reduction in care expenses through operational efficiency, lower selling expenses and lower marketing spend, partially offset by higher bad debt expenses.

The lower selling expenses are a result of continued streamlining of the sales organization as well as improved channel mix and lower average commission rates due to device mix. The increase in bad debt primarily reflects the impact of increased accounts receivable associated with subscribers who have elected the finance for purchase of their device through our installment billing program.

Moving to Slide 24, we needed the quarter with a total liquidity position of $9.1 billion, including cash and cash equivalents and short-term investments of $5.5 billion and $2.4 billion of undrawn borrowing capacity under our revolving bank credit facility.

During the quarter, we entered into a facility to sell certain accounts receivables. The amount and eligibility of scalable receivables will vary over time and was approximately $1.2 billion at the end of the quarter. We had not drawn upon the facility as of the end of the quarter, but this facility will provide additional diversity of future funding sources As we look ahead, we have no significant maturities due until December of 2016.

Capital expenditures of just over $1.4 billion in the quarter were up $359 million, sequentially, primarily related to growing momentum of the 2.5 gigahertz build.

Year-over-year capital expenditures are down $481 million. For the same quarter last year, the Network Vision program was the lion share of the capital program as deployment was accelerating.

This year’s spending on network modernization has been lower as spend for construction has wound down as we approached our originally planned deployment targets. Partially offsetting this decrease is higher spending on Sprint Spark deployments.

Our capital spend is expected to increase in the second half of the year as we continue to invest in LTE capacity by expanding LTE on 800 megahertz and 2.5 gigahertz spectrum to enhance the customer experience.

Free cash flow was negative $496 million for the quarter compared to negative 396 million for the year ago period and negative $1.1 billion last quarter. The year-over-year decline was due to higher working capital spend offset by higher EBITDA and lower CapEx.

Sequentially, the improvement is related to higher cash from operations, decreased cash from pay for CapEx and favorable expenditures related to FCC licenses due to a one-time refund of rebranding cost.

Within working capital, we did have $610 million included in the accounts and notes receivable related to installment billing. Total net receivables related to installment billing were $981 million, up from $616 million at the end of last quarter.

Now, I would like to provide an update on our guidance for calendar year 2014. We have made significant year-over-year improvement in our are adjusted EBITDA margins in the first half of this year and expect to continue our disciplined approach of taking additional cost out of the business in the back half of this year, as well as seeing the financial benefits of network modernization.

However, the gains in our core wireless margins are partially offset by the expected decline in wireline adjusted EBITDA in the second half of this year. We have delivered year-over-year growth in organic wireless EBITDA of nearly 20% in the first half of this calendar year, excluding any benefits from installment billing. We are maintaining our expected calendar year 2014 consolidated adjusted EBITDA of between $6.7 billion and $6.9 billion. As Dan mentioned, we are closely evaluating the competitive landscape and our positioning in light of our goal to be postpaid net add positive in the fourth quarter.

While this adjusted EBITDA guidance doesn’t assume a change in our postpaid rate card for this year. Any proposed changes would be made only after evaluating our market test results and determining that they should be long-term accretive for the business. Finally based on the projected depreciation and amortization expenses for the balance of the year, we expect to continue to generate positive operating income in 2014.

From a capital perspective, we are wrapping up the rip and replace activity and shifting our focus on the expansion of the Sprint Spark throughout the year, with the 2.5 gigahertz LTE overlays being weighted to the second half. This migration of data traffic to LTE is allowing for less investment in 3G capacity than we had originally planned.

With the laser focus on deploying Sprint Spark and the optimization of the network as well as the close working relationship with SoftBank, we are seeing greater efficiency in our capital spending, including lower rates on equipment. As a result, we now expect our calendar year 2014 capital expenditures to be below $7 billion. However, let me underscore that our expected spending on the 800 megahertz and the 2.5 gigahertz deployments remains unchanged and John and his team remain committed to meeting or exceeding our original deployment targets for this year.

I am proud of what the Sprint team has been able to accomplish in the first half of this year, but there’s still more work to do and I am confident that with their continued hard work and dedication, we will continue to make progress.

I will now turn the call over back to Brad for Q&A.

Brad Hampton – Vice President of Investor Relations

Thanks Joe. In just a moment, we will begin the Q&A. Christie; can you please inform our participants on how to queue up for the question and answer session?

Question-and-Answer Session

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