Globalstar, the Covington satellite telephone services provider, reported a fourth-quarter loss of $26.8 million, or 3 cents per diluted share, compared with a $92 million profit, or 9 cents per share, the year before.
The loss was due to a change in the value of Globalstar’s derivatives because the company’s stock price dropped during the three-month period ending Dec. 31. The stock started the quarter trading at $1.59 a share, peaked at $2.18 a share in late November and closed the year at $1.44. Globalstar lost nearly $1.6 million because of the derivative change; in the fourth quarter of 2014 that had boosted the company by $132.6 million.
The company’s adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, or EBITDA, were $5.2 million for the quarter, compared with $3.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2014. A decrease in expenses, caused by a lower cost for subscriber equipment sales and the strengthening U.S. dollar affecting exchange rates, led to the higher earnings.
Company officials have said EBITDA is the measuring stick satellite phone companies use because they are severely affected by depreciation of their equipment.
Globalstar said revenue for the quarter was $22.8 million, compared with $22.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2014. The company added 26,000 subscribers during the quarter and has seen the total number of subscribers increase by nearly 50,000 in the past year, said Jay Monroe, chairman and CEO of Globalstar.
Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to report a loss of 3 cents per share on revenue of $23.67 million for the fourth quarter.
Globalstar stock was up 4 cents a share to $1.32 Thursday, a 3.1 percent increase.
For the year, the company had earnings of $72.3 million, or 7 cents a share, compared with a $462.9 million loss for 2014, or 50 cents a share. Globalstar revenue rose from nearly $90.1 million in 2014 to $90.5 million. EBITDA for 2015 was $16 million, compared with $17.4 million in 2014.
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