Bell “best ever” Q1 with 351,000 wireless activations

Bell released their Q1 2008 results and it seems the business is progressing – especially in the wireless segment with their “best ever Q1 for gross activations”.

George Cope, President and Chief Operating Officer of Bell Canada said “We continued to make operating progress this quarter with a record Q1 for wireless gross activations. We were pleased that the momentum we built in the second half of 2007 in acquiring wireless subscribers continued this quarter and that 82% of our net activations were on postpaid rate plans. Customers responded to our offers and our wide array of new full-function smartphones. However, the high level of these activations and increased spending on customer retention and handset upgrades had an impact on our wireless EBITDA growth this quarter”.

The Bell Wireless segment had 351,000 gross activations, or 18.6% more than last year. Net activations this quarter were 34,000, significantly higher than the 13,000 net activations experienced in Q1 2007. Total Bell Wireless operating revenues increased by 8.7%.

Here are the overall highlights:
– Total gross activations were 351,000 this quarter, or 18.6% higher than last year.
– Total net activations were 34,000 this quarter compared to the 13,000 net activations in Q1 2007
(Approximately 82% of the net activations this quarter were postpaid.)
– The Bell Wireless client base reached 6,250,000, up 7.4% over last year.
– Total Bell Wireless operating revenues grew 8.7% to $1,041 million
– Wireless network revenues increased by 7.4% to $955 million
– Bell Wireless EBITDA grew by 1.7% to $410 million this quarter
– Bell Wireless operating income increased by 0.7% to $293 million this quarter.
– Cost of acquisition decreased by 5.7% to $396 per gross activation