SoftBank Rises as Sprint Beats Estimates, Raises Outlook

SoftBank Corp., the Japanese wireless carrier that paid $22 billion for control of Sprint Corp., rose in Tokyo trading after the U.S. company boosted its full-year forecast and topped first-quarter sales estimates.

SoftBank gained 0.5 percent to 7,590 yen at the 3 p.m. close of trading in Tokyo, while Japan’s benchmark Topix index advanced 0.2 percent. The shares have fallen 18 percent this year.

Sprint’s earnings are improving faster than analysts expected amid U.S. competition that’s caused the Overland Park, Kansas-based company to post 25 net losses in 26 quarters. The company still lost subscribers in the quarter, adding urgency to SoftBank Chief Executive Officer Masayoshi Son’s attempts to persuade U.S. regulators to allow Sprint and rival T-Mobile US Inc. to combine and create a more competitive provider.

Sprint’s first-quarter revenue increased to $8.88 billion as the mobile carrier held onto more subscribers than expected, the company said in a statement yesterday. That topped the $8.77 billion average of analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Sprint lost 231,000 branded monthly subscribers in the quarter and 333,000 total. The company raised its forecast for 2014 adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization to as much as $6.9 billion from a prior projection of as much as $6.7 billion.

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