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Posted May 6, 2009 | Copyright © The Northern Virginia Daily
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Shentel swings to loss in quarter

EDINBURG — Shentel swung to a loss in the first quarter after recording a $10.7 million write-off after taxes from its discontinued converged services unit.

“Unfortunately, after reassessing the market conditions and our progress in selling our converged services operation, we concluded there was a significant decline in value of these assets,” company President and CEO Christopher E. French said in a statement.

In September, Shentel announced plans to explore the sale of the unit, an outgrowth of its purchase of Harrisonburg-based NTC Communications in late 2004. Converged Services bundles video, Internet and voice services for delivery to off-campus college housing.

The telecommunications company’s continuing operations posted net income of $6.2 million, up 14 percent over the same quarter in 2008.

Revenue jumped 19 percent to $40.1 million, primarily due to increases in the company’s Sprint Nextel-branded PCS wireless subscribers, average billing per subscriber and the revenue of its newly acquired cable TV operations from Rapid Communications.

Shentel ended the quarter with 213,054 wireless subscribers, while its PCS churn rate — the percentage of customers who choose to drop service — increased slightly to 2.15 percent.

High-speed data services are now available to 87 percent of the population covered by Shentel’s PCS network, the company said.

— Daily Staff Report

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