Alternative service provider cbey reported Q4 and full year 2008 earnings today, with no big surprises. Revenues of $93.9M and earnings of $0.02/share were basically inline with guidance and expectations. Churn rose slightly to 1.4% from 1.3%, which seems about right given the economy. More importantly though, they did not waver in the slightest regarding 2009, maintaining projections of $420M-440M or 20-25% growth and $62-70M in EBITDA. Not many companies in the sector are giving detailed guidance for 2009 and I don’t blame them, but I do commend those that do for the guts required.
In addition, Cbeyond announced that its next new market will be Seattle, where it will face Qwest on similar turf to Denver where they have seen success. Their Washington DC area market will apparently launch this quarter, Seattle later this year. They are cautious about churn and sales, but the company appears to have escaped major damage from the recession thus far and is therefore continuing with their expansion plans.
Cbeyond’s strength bodes well for service providers in this recession. The small and medium enterprises they serve have been thought to be a soft spot in the sector, especially for companies that use other people’s fiber. Yet so far the effects have been manageable. We can only hope that continues throughout the year.
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