Alaska Communications Systems Group, Inc. :ALSK-US: Earnings Analysis: Q1, 2017 By the Numbers : May 10, 2017

Alaska Communications Systems Group, Inc. reports financial results for the quarter ended March 31, 2017.

We analyze the earnings along side the following peers of Alaska Communications Systems Group, Inc. – Consolidated Communications Holdings, Inc., Cincinnati Bell Inc., General Communication, Inc. Class A, CenturyLink, Inc., AT&T Inc., Verizon Communications Inc. and Hawaiian Telcom Holdco, Inc. (CNSL-US, CBB-US, GNCMA-US, CTL-US, T-US, VZ-US and HCOM-US) that have also reported for this period.

Highlights

  • Summary numbers: Revenues of USD 56.73 million, Net Earnings of USD -0.68 million.
  • Gross margins widened from 38.49% to 39.99% compared to the same period last year, operating (EBITDA) margins now 23.79% from 22.83%.
  • Year-on-year change in operating cash flow of -48.22% is about the same as the change in earnings, likely no significant movement in accruals or reserves.
  • Earnings declined although operating margins improved from 7.70% to 8.10%.

The table below shows the preliminary results and recent trends for key metrics such as revenues and net income growth:

2017-03-31 2016-12-31 2016-09-30 2016-06-30 2016-03-31
Relevant Numbers (Quarterly)
Revenues (mil) 56.73 57.79 56.48 56.26 56.33
Revenue Growth (%YOY) 0.72 2.05 3.19 1.07 -14.38
Earnings (mil) -0.68 1.63 0.35 0.32 0.09
Earnings Growth (%YOY) -886.05 380.53 -71.43 106.55 -99.47
Net Margin (%) -1.19 2.82 0.63 0.56 0.15
EPS -0.01 0.03 0.01 0.01 0
Return on Equity (%) -1.7 4.13 0.91 0.82 0.22
Return on Assets (%) -0.53 1.39 0.32 0.28 0.07

Access our Ratings and Scores for Alaska Communications Systems Group, Inc.

Market Share Versus Profits

Revenues History
Earnings History

ALSK-US‘s change in revenue this period compared to the same period last year of 0.72% is almost the same as its change in earnings, and is about average among the announced results thus far in its peer group, suggesting that ALSK-US is holding onto its market share. Also, for comparison purposes, revenues changed by -1.84% and earnings by -141.50% compared to the immediate last period.

Revenues Growth Versus Earnings Growth

Quadrant label definitions. Hover to know more

Leader, Earnings Focus, Laggard, Revenues Focus

Earnings Growth Analysis

The company’s year-on-year earnings decline did not come as a result of a contraction in gross margins or because of any cost control issues. Both gross margins and operating margins (EBITDA) margins actually improved over this time frame. Gross margins went from 38.49% to 39.99%, while operating margins improved from 22.83% to 23.79% over this period. For comparison, gross margins were 41.42% and EBITDA margins 26.90% in the immediate last period.

Gross Margin Versus EBITDA Margin

Quadrant label definitions. Hover to know more

Differentiated; Low Cost, Commodity; Low Cost, Commodity; High Cost, Differentiated; High Cost

Gross Margin Trend

Companies sometimes sacrifice improvements in revenues and margins in order to extend friendlier terms to customers and vendors. Capital Cube probes for such activity by comparing the changes in gross margins with any changes in working capital. If the gross margins improved without a worsening of working capital, it is possible that the company’s performance is a result of truly delivering in the marketplace and not simply an accounting prop-up using the balance sheet.

Gross Margin History
Working Capital Days History

ALSK-US‘s gross margin improvement has not produced any big difference in its working capital. Working capital days are currently 94.72, compared to last year’s level of 20.93 days. This leads Capital Cube to conclude that the improvements in gross margins are likely from operating decisions and not trade-offs with the balance sheet.

Gross Margin Versus Working Capital Days

Quadrant label definitions. Hover to know more

Customer Financed, Cash Starved, Supplier Financed, Cash Rich

Cash Versus Earnings – Sustainable Performance?

It is important to examine a company�s cash versus earnings numbers to gauge whether its performance is sustainable.

ALSK-US‘s change in operating cash flow of -48.22% compared to the same period last year is about the same as its change in earnings this period. Additionally, this change in operating cash flow is about average among its peer group. This suggests that the company did not use accruals or reserves to manage earnings this period, and that, all else being equal, the earnings number is sustainable.

Operating Cash Flow Growth Versus Earnings Growth

Quadrant label definitions. Hover to know more

Cash Flow based Earnings, Likely Non-cash Earnings, Low Cash Flow Base, Likely Undeclared Earnings

Margins

Despite an overall improvement in operating (EBIT) margins, the company’s earnings fell. EBIT margins went from 7.70% to 8.10%. The decline in earnings appears to be largely because of one-time items. Pretax margins declined from 0.21% to -2.71%.

EBIT Margin Versus PreTax Margin

Quadrant label definitions. Hover to know more

Operation driven Earnings, One-time Favorables, Low Earnings Base, One-time Unfavorables
EBIT Margin History
PreTax Margin History

Access our Ratings and Scores for Alaska Communications Systems Group, Inc.

Company Profile

Alaska Communications Systems Group, Inc. engages in the provision of telecommunications and network services to consumer, business and enterprise customers. Its services includes communications and managed services including voice and broadband data network hosting, information technology management, cloud-based services, billing and collection, and local and long distance services to business and wholesale customer. The company was founded by James H. Huesgen and Wayne P. Graham in October 1998 and is headquartered in Anchorage, AK.

CapitalCube does not own any shares in the stocks mentioned and focuses solely on providing unique fundamental research and analysis on approximately 50,000 stocks and ETFs globally. Try any of our analysis, screener or portfolio premium services free for 7 days. To get a quick preview of our services, check out our free quick summary analysis of ALSK-US.