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CONTEL CELLULAR REPORTS SECOND QUARTER AND MID-YEAR RESULTS FOR 1993

 ATLANTA, Aug. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Contel Cellular Inc. (NASDAQ: CCXLA) today reported a net loss for the quarter and six months ended June 30, 1993, of $19.8 million and $53.3 million, respectively, or 20 cents and 53 cents per share, as compared with a net loss of $29.1 million and $59.5 million, or 29 cents and 59 cents per share for the corresponding 1992 periods. The restatement of 1992 year-to- date results for the adoption of FAS 106, "Employers' Accounting for Postretirement Benefits Other than Pensions", increased the previously reported net loss by $2.4 million.
 Second quarter revenues increased 27 percent to $89.4 million, compared with $70.6 million reported in 1992. Subscriber additions during the quarter totaled 37,400, a 109 percent increase over the second quarter 1992 subscriber gain, and a 53 percent increase over the first quarter 1993 subscriber gain. At June 30, 1993, ending subscribers totaled 389,000, a 43 percent increase over the second quarter 1992.
 Second quarter operating cash flow (operating income before depreciation and amortization) more than doubled to $25.4 million, as compared to $12.6 million for the corresponding 1992 period.
 Contel Cellular President and Chief Executive Officer Dennis Whipple said, "We are pleased with the growth in our operating cash flow, which totaled $41.6 million for the six-month period ended June 30, 1993, or 94 percent higher than the corresponding 1992 period. This increase was achieved while adding 27,000, or 76 percent, more net subscribers, reflecting the positive impact of our efforts to control subscriber acquisition costs."
 SECOND QUARTER RESULTS REVIEWED
 Service revenues, which exclude equipment sales, increased 28 percent to $83.5 million for the second quarter as compared to $65.3 million reported in the corresponding 1992 period. The increase was attributable to a 41 percent increase in average second quarter subscribers, partially offset by lower usage per subscriber. Average monthly service revenue per subscriber declined to $74, compared with $81 for the same period in 1992. The 1993 revenue per subscriber reflects the increased number of casual users in the subscriber base. Average monthly churn fell to a new low of 1.8 percent, as compared with 2.2 percent for the corresponding period in 1992.
 The $2.0 million operating loss for the quarter was $8.8 million lower than the loss for the corresponding 1992 period. The lower 1993 operating loss was primarily attributable to the increase in revenues, partially offset by expenses associated with the higher net subscriber additions, and an increase in depreciation due to greater average plant balances.
 Net loss of $19.8 million for the second 1993 quarter was $9.3 million lower than the corresponding 1992 period. The lower net loss was primarily attributable to improved operating results and equity in earnings of unconsolidated partnerships.
 MID-YEAR RESULTS REVIEWED
 Total revenues for the six months ended June 30, 1993, were $167.1 million, 26 percent higher than the $133.0 million in the same period last year. Service revenues increased 27 percent to $156.4 million, compared to $123.0 million reported in 1992. The increase in service revenues was attributable to the higher subscriber base, partially offset by lower usage per subscriber.
 The 1993 year-to-date operating loss of $11.5 million was $10.7 million less than the $22.2 million operating loss reported in the corresponding 1992 period. The reduced operating loss was primarily attributable to higher revenues, partially offset by expenses associated with the increased volume of subscriber additions and higher network depreciation.
 The 1993 six-month net loss of $53.3 million was $6.2 million less than the loss reported for the corresponding 1992 period. This improvement was primarily attributed to improved operating results and equity in earnings of unconsolidated partnerships, partially offset by a $9.8 million increase in interest expense.
 Contel Cellular provides cellular services in 34 metropolitan markets in the United States. The company is a limited partner in 29 additional metropolitan markets and has ownership interests in 83 rural service areas. Based on total-market population or POPs, Contel Cellular is the sixth-largest cellular telecommunications company in the United States, with interests in cellular systems representing 24.3 million POPs.
 Contel Cellular is a publicly traded company, of which 90 percent of the outstanding shares are indirectly owned by GTE Corporation (NYSE: GTE).
 GTE is the largest U.S.-based local telephone company and the second-largest cellular-service provider in the United States. With $20 billion in revenues in 1992, it is the fourth-largest publicly owned telecommunications company in the world.
 CONTEL CELLULAR INC.
 Consolidated Statements of Operations
 (Thousands, except per-share data)
 Unaudited
 3 mos. ended June 30 1993 1992 Change
 Revenues & sales:
 Service revenues $83,535 $65,315 $18,220
 Equipment sales 5,855 5,323 532
 Total 89,390 70,638 18,752
 Costs and expenses:
 Cost of services 10,184 8,425 (1,759)
 Cost of equipment sales 10,093 9,114 (979)
 Selling, general & admin. 43,679 40,456 (3,223)
 Depreciation 17,068 13,128 (3,940)
 Amortization of intangibles 10,332 10,329 (3)
 Total 91,356 81,452 (9,904)
 Operating loss (1,966) (10,814) 8,848
 Interest expense, net 39,647 37,274 (2,373)
 Other (income) expense, net (1,198) 3 1,201
 Loss before minority interests (40,415) (48,091) 7,676
 Minority interests (109) 89 (198)
 Loss from consolidated operations (40,524) (48,002) 7,478
 Equity in earnings of unconsolidated
 partnerships 11,153 6,090 5,063
 Loss before income taxes (29,371) (41,912) 12,541
 Benefit from income taxes (9,537) (12,766) (3,229)
 Net loss $(19,834)$(29,146)$ 9,312
 Net loss per share $ (0.20)$ (0.29)$ 0.09
 Wtd. average shares outstanding 99,947 99,941 6
 6 mos. ended June 30 1993 1992 Change
 Revenues & sales:
 Service revenues $156,385 $123,045 $33,340
 Equipment sales 10,701 9,999 702
 Total 167,086 133,044 34,042
 Costs and expenses:
 Cost of services 20,787 17,173 (3,614)
 Cost of equipment sales 17,912 16,062 (1,850)
 Selling, general & admin. 86,754 78,369 (8,385)
 Depreciation 32,508 23,023 (9,485)
 Amortization of intangibles 20,643 20,665 22
 Total 178,604 155,292 (23,312)
 Operating loss (11,518) (22,248) 10,730
 Interest expense, net 82,633 72,845 (9,788)
 Other (income) expense, net (1,198) 157 1,355
 Loss before minority interests (92,953) (95,250) 2,297
 Minority interests 159 859 (700)
 Loss from consolidated operations (92,794) (94,391) 1,597
 Equity in earnings of unconsolidated
 partnerships 15,628 10,876 4,752
 Loss before income taxes (77,166) (83,515) 6,349
 Benefit from income taxes (23,845) (26,115) (2,270)
 Net loss before cumulative effect
 of change in acctng. principles (53,321) (57,400) 4,079
 Cumulative effect of change in
 accounting principle --- (2,080) 2,080
 Net loss $(53,321)$(59,480)$ 6,159
 Net loss per share before cum.
 effect of chg. in acctng. princ. $ (0.53)$ (0.57)$ 0.04
 Net loss per share $ (0.53)$ (0.59)$ 0.06
 Wtd. average shares outstanding 99,947 99,941 6
 -0- 8/11/93
 /CONTACT: Ted Carrier, 404-804-3549, or Jeff Keller, 404-391-8358, both of Contel Cellular/
 (CCXLA GTE)


CO: Contel Cellular, Inc. ST: Georgia IN: TLS SU: ERN

BN-RA -- AT004 -- 1587 08/11/93 10:29 EDT
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Date:Aug 11, 1993
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