Cox Communications Inc. will slash capital expenditures by about $400
million in 2003, allowing the company to reach free-cash-flow-positive a lot
sooner than first expected, company executives told investors and analysts
Chief financial officer Jimmy Hayes said at the
Morgan Stanley Global Communications Conference in Miami that Cox will be free-cash-flow-positive
for all of 2003.
Originally, the company had expected to show free cash flow -- or earnings
once capital expenditures and interest payments are made -- in the fourth
quarter of 2003.
Hayes told analysts capex for 2003 will be about $1.6 billion, down from the
$2 billion expected in 2002 and the $2.2 billion spent in 2001.
The main reason for the capex decline is that
the MSO's plant upgrades are nearly completed.
Cox said about 89 percent of its plant will be at 750-megahertz capacity by
the end of 2002.
Cox shares rose 56 cents each, or just over 2 percent, to