Forsee Steps Down as Chairman, CEO of Sprint Nextel
October 08, 2007 at 16:31 PM EDT
Sprint Nextel announced today that Gary Forsee is stepping down as the company’s chairman, president and chief executive officer (CEO), effective immediately. A committee of the Sprint Nextel Board of Directors has been formed and is conducting the search for a new CEO.
James Hance, Jr., a member of the Board of Directors, will assume the role of acting non-executive chairman of the Board. Paul Saleh, current chief financial officer of Sprint Nextel, will serve as acting CEO until a permanent replacement for Forsee is named. With Hance serving in the position of non-executive chairman, the position of lead independent director, held by Irvine Hockaday, will be combined with that role. Hockaday will remain a member of the Board.
"On behalf of the entire board and the Sprint Nextel employees, we want to thank Gary for his dedication and leadership and all of the contributions he has made since becoming chief executive of Sprint in 2003," said Hockaday.
According to Hockaday, the decision to seek a new CEO was based on the Board’s belief that it is the right time to put in place new leadership to move the company forward in improving its performance and realizing corporate objectives.
“The Board’s search for selecting its next chief executive will focus on candidates outside the company,” said Hockaday. “We fully expect that the search will be concluded in a timely manner and we are focused on selecting the right candidate to guide the company to achieve its full potential. Sprint Nextel has the assets, spectrum, customer base and technology to be the leader in wireless mobility services.”
Updated Operational Metrics and Financial Guidance
The company announced today that it expects to report a net loss of approximately 337,000 post-paid subscribers in the third quarter. In addition, both adjusted OIBDA* and consolidated operating revenue for 2007 are expected to be slightly below the range of previously provided guidance of $11.0 to $11.5 billion of adjusted OIBDA and $41 to $42 billion of consolidated operating revenue.
Sprint Nextel will release its third-quarter financial results on Thursday, Nov. 1, 2007.
Additional Background on Hance and Saleh
Hance, 63, a senior advisor to The Carlyle Group, is retired vice chairman and former member of the Board of Directors of Bank of America Corporation, where he served as vice chairman from 1993 until January 2005 and as the chief financial officer of Bank of America Corporation from 1988 until April 2004. He is a director of Cousins Properties Incorporated, Duke Energy Corporation and Rayonier Corporation. He has been a member of the Sprint Nextel Board since February 2005.
Saleh, 50, has served as chief financial officer since the merger of Sprint and Nextel. Prior to the merger he had been executive vice president and chief financial officer for Nextel since joining the company in 2001. Before joining Nextel, Saleh was senior vice president and chief financial officer at Walt Disney International from 1997 to 2001, and also served as senior vice president and treasurer for The Walt Disney Company. Prior to Disney, Saleh served as treasurer of Honeywell, where he spent 12 years in various leadership positions in finance, treasury, investor relations, strategic planning and operations.
Sprint Nextel provides financial measures generated using generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and using adjustments to GAAP (non-GAAP). The non-GAAP financial measures reflect industry conventions, or standard measures of liquidity, profitability or performance commonly used by the investment community for comparability purposes. These non-GAAP measures are not measurements under accounting principles generally accepted in the United States. These measurements should be considered in addition to, but not as a substitute for, the information contained in our financial statements prepared in accordance with GAAP. We have defined below each of the non-GAAP measures we use, but these measures may not be synonymous to similar measurement terms used by other companies.
Because Sprint Nextel does not predict special items that might occur in the future, and our forecasts are developed at a level of detail different than that used to prepare GAAP-based financial measures, Sprint Nextel does not provide reconciliations to GAAP of its forward-looking financial measures.
The measure used in this release includes the following:
Adjusted OIBDA is defined as operating income before depreciation, amortization, restructuring and asset impairments, and special items. This non-GAAP measure should be used in addition to, but not as a substitute for, the analysis provided in the statement of operations. We believe that Adjusted OIBDA provide useful information to investors because they are an indicator of the strength and performance of our ongoing business operations, including our ability to fund discretionary spending such as capital expenditures, spectrum acquisitions and other investments and our ability to incur and service debt.
While depreciation and amortization are considered operating costs under generally accepted accounting principles, these expenses primarily represent non-cash current period allocation of costs associated with long-lived assets acquired or constructed in prior periods. Adjusted OIBDA is a calculation commonly used as a basis for investors, analysts and credit rating agencies to evaluate and compare the periodic and future operating performance and value of companies within the telecommunications industry.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This news release includes “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the securities laws. The statements in this news release regarding forward-looking guidance, as well as other statements that are not historical facts, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are estimates and projections reflecting management's judgment based on currently available information and involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those suggested by the forward-looking statements. With respect to these forward-looking statements, management has made assumptions regarding, among other things, customer and network usage, customer growth and retention, pricing, operating costs, the timing of various events and the economic environment.
Future performance cannot be assured. Actual results may differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Some factors that could cause actual results to differ include:
Sprint Nextel believes these forward-looking statements are reasonable; however, you should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements, which are based on current expectations and speak only as of the date of this release. Sprint Nextel is not obligated to publicly release any revisions to forward-looking statements to reflect events after the date of this release.
About Sprint Nextel
Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S) offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including two robust wireless networks serving 54 million customers at the end of the second quarter 2007; industry-leading mobile data services; instant national and international walkie-talkie capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. For more information, visit www.sprint.com.