SBA Communications Corporation (Nasdaq: SBAC) Thursday reported results for the quarter ended December 31, 2019.
Highlights of the fourth quarter include:
- Net income of $67.4 million or $0.59 per share and site leasing revenue of $481.1 million
- AFFO per share growth of 10.0 percent over the year earlier period on a constant currency basis
- Tower Cash Flow and Adjusted EBITDA margins of 81.0 percent and 71.0 percent, respectively
- Portfolio growth of 9.6 percent for the year, including 1,499 sites added during the quarter
- Issued $1.0 billion of unsecured senior notes at 3.875 percent per annum subsequent to the quarter
- Repurchased 0.9 million shares
In addition, the company announced its Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.465 per share of SBA’s Class A common stock, an increase of 25 percent over the dividend paid in the fourth quarter. The distribution is payable March 26, 2020 to the shareholders of record at the close of business on March 10, 2020.
“We are very pleased with our finish to 2019 and our positioning for 2020 and beyond,” commented SBA President/CEO Jeffrey Stoops. “Notwithstanding the pronounced industry slowdown in the U.S. that began in August resulting from the legal challenges to the T-Mobile acquisition of Sprint, we finished the year very well, producing material growth in AFFO per share ahead of plan. For the first time, we exceeded $2 billion in revenue in a year. In the fourth quarter, we continued to execute very well operationally, repurchased almost one million shares of our stock at very attractive prices, repriced over 20% of our debt to lower interest rates and added approximately 1,500 sites to our portfolio, bringing total portfolio growth for the year to over nine percent. We did all of this while staying at the low end of our target leverage range and maintaining excellent liquidity. Our international markets continued to perform very well, particularly Brazil and South Africa, our two largest international markets, on a constant currency basis.”
“With the recent developments regarding the T-Mobile/Sprint transaction, the ability for Dish to become the 4th nationwide carrier now clear, the CBRS and C-Band auctions planned for later this year, and important spectrum auctions planned for our international markets over the next two years, we believe we are on the cusp of a material increase in operational activity and demand for our infrastructure likely to begin in the second half of 2020 and continue for years thereafter,” said Stoops. “We are extremely confident and excited about our future, so much so that we have just approved an increase to our quarterly dividend of over 25 percent. While a substantial increase, this dividend on an annual basis represents only approximately 20 percent of our AFFO in our 2020 Outlook, leaving us substantial capital for additional investment. We believe we will continue to produce material growth in AFFO per share and now, with the dividend, total shareholder return.”
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