Updated: Thursday, 28 Feb 2013, 2:27 PM EST
Published : Thursday, 28 Feb 2013, 2:27 PM EST
RESTON, Va. (AP) — NII Holdings Inc., a provider of wireless service in Latin America, lost $529.9 million in its fourth quarter as it dealt with an asset write-down in Chile and its decision to speed up the deactivation of unprofitable customers in Brazil.
Shares slid almost 9 percent in afternoon trading on Thursday.
The Reston, Va., company said its loss amounted to $3.45 per share for the three months ended Dec. 31. A year earlier it reported net income of $3.2 million, or 2 cents per share.
Analysts expected a loss of $1.41 per share, according to a FactSet survey.
Revenue declined 8 percent to $1.47 billion from $1.6 billion. Wall Street was looking for slightly higher revenue of $1.48 billion.
NII added approximately 2,000 subscribers on a net basis in the quarter. The company said that this figure accounts for its decision to deactivate unprofitable customers in Brazil. This action led to the loss of 292,000 net subscribers in Brazil in the quarter.
NII also took a $299 million impairment charge in the period to write down the value of its Chile assets.
NII's stock fell 48 cents, or 8.8 percent, to $4.96 in afternoon trading The shares have traded in a 52-week range of $4.75 to $19.63.
For the year, NII Holdings lost $765.2 million, or $4.46 per share. That compares with net income of $225.2 million, or $1.30 per share, in the prior year. Annual revenue fell 10 percent to $6.09 billion from $6.73 billion.
The company said it added 650,000 net subscribers, giving it a total subscriber base of 11.4 million at year's end. This is up 6 percent from the previous year.