MasTec's CEO Discusses Q3 2011 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

MasTec (MTZ)

Q3 2011 Earnings Call

November 04, 2011 9:00 am ET


J. Marc Lewis - Vice President of Investor Relations

C. Robert Campbell - Chief Financial Officer, Principal Accounting Officer and Executive Vice President

Jose Ramon Mas - Chief Executive Officer and Director


William D. Bremer - Maxim Group LLC, Research Division

Noelle Dilts - Stifel, Nicolaus & Co., Inc., Research Division

Theodore R. O'Neil - Wunderlich Securities Inc., Research Division

Min Cho - FBR Capital Markets & Co., Research Division

Adam R. Thalhimer - BB&T Capital Markets, Research Division

Peter Chang - Crédit Suisse AG, Research Division

Veny Aleksandrov - Pritchard Capital Partners, LLC, Research Division

Andy Kaplowitz - Barclays Capital, Research Division

Liam D. Burke - Janney Montgomery Scott LLC, Research Division

Unknown Analyst -

John Rogers - D.A. Davidson & Co., Research Division

Tahira Afzal - KeyBanc Capital Markets Inc., Research Division



Welcome to MasTec's Third Quarter 2011 Earnings Conference Call, initially broadcast on November 4, 2011. Let me remind participants that today's call is being recorded. At this time, I'd like to turn the call over to Marc Lewis, MasTec's Vice President of Investor Relations. Marc?

J. Marc Lewis

Thanks, Jenny. Good morning, everyone. Welcome to MasTec's Third Quarter Earnings Conference Call.

The following statement is made pursuant to the Safe Harbor for forward-looking statements described in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In these communications, we may make certain statements that are forward-looking, such as statements regarding MasTec's future plans, results and anticipated trends in the industries where we operate. These forward-looking statements are as the company's expectations on the date of the initial broadcast of this conference call, and the company will make no effort to update these expectations based on subsequent events or knowledge. Various risks, uncertainties and assumptions are detailed in our press releases and filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize or should any of our underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may differ significantly from these, which are expressed or implied in these communications.

In addition, we may use certain non-GAAP financial measures in this conference call. A reconciliation of any non-GAAP financial measures not reconciled in these comments to the most comparable GAAP financial measure can be found in our earnings release or related SEC filings or on the Investor Relations section of our website at

With us today, we have José Mas, our Chief Executive Officer; and Bob Campbell, our Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. The format of the call will be opening remarks and analysis by José, followed by a financial review from Bob. These discussions will be followed by a Q&A period, and we expect the call to last for about 60 minutes.

I'll now turn the call over to José so we can get started. José?

Jose Ramon Mas

Thank you, Marc. Good morning, and welcome to MasTec's 2011 Third Quarter Call. Today, I will be reviewing our third quarter results, providing my outlook for the markets we serve, and providing color on both the fourth quarter and 2012 guidance.

First, some third quarter highlights. Revenue for the quarter was $865 million, a 37% increase over the prior year's quarter. EBITDA was $80 million, compared with $73 million in the prior year's quarter. EPS was $0.36 versus $0.35 in last year's third quarter. Net income was $32 million versus $30 million last year, and backlog was up nicely to $3.1 billion, our highest level ever, and the bidding project pipeline remains strong, which I'll cover later.

During the third quarter, we again demonstrated our ability to grow the company by posting another quarter of year-over-year revenue growth of 37%. This now marks 7 consecutive quarters where our year-over-year quarterly revenue growth rate has exceeded 28%.

During the third quarter, our growth was broad-based. On a year-over-year quarterly basis, our pipeline revenues grew 57%, that's despite having significantly less revenue from the Ruby pipeline on a year-over-year basis. Our wireline business -- our wireless business grew 49%, our install-to-the-home business grew 35%, our telecommunications wireline and electrical distribution business grew 24%, and our transmission and substation business grew 262%. This was offset by a decline in our renewables business of 47%.

We are very pleased with our ability to grow revenues and how we have positioned the company to take advantage of the opportunities in multiple end markets. We are seeing and believe we will continue to see an increase in the opportunities available to us in the markets we serve, and we are very bullish about our ability to grow the company over a sustained period of time.

While we are pleased with our growth, we are disappointed by our margin performance in the third quarter. Although we achieved our earnings guidance numbers, performance could have and should have been much better. EBITDA margins were lower than expected, primarily for 2 reasons. First, severe rain, floods and ground saturation in Pennsylvania and West Virginia have had a significant impact on our ability to perform work on 3 major contracts in the Marcellus Shale. This negatively impacted margins in our pipeline business by about 250 basis points. Unfortunately, the conditions have not improved and we expect it to have an even greater impact in the fourth quarter. We'll discuss that later. And second, our wireless margins were lower than expected, as we had very aggressive construction milestones that we needed to achieve for our primary customer during the third quarter. Although we turned in a solid performance, it came at the expense of margins. Wireless margins were negatively impacted by about 300 basis points.

Again, while we're pleased with our growth in performance in the third quarter, we can perform much better from a margin perspective.

Now, I would like to cover some industry specifics. Our communications revenue grew 37% over last year's third quarter to $477 million. This increase was driven by double-digit growth in all of our communications markets, including install-to-the-home, wireline and wireless. In our install-to-the-home business, revenue from DIRECTV was up 17% organically or up 35%, including our recent Halsted acquisition. Halsted was a service provider for DIRECTV covering portions of the Northeast that we acquired in late June. The integration of this acquisition into our existing DIRECTV business is progressing ahead of schedule, and we expect to see significant improvement in Halsted's results in 2012.

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