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Leap Wireless Posts Loss as Customer Count Grows

Leap Wireless International Inc., the San Diego-based parent firm of the flat-rate wireless carrier known as Cricket, reported total revenue for the quarter ended March 31 of $389.4 million, up 46 percent from the like period of 2006.

Leap, which reported its financials May 8, reported a net loss of $8.1 million in the quarter compared with a net profit of $17.7 million in the like period last year. The company said increased depreciation and interest expense associated with expanding into new markets, including San Diego, contributed to the loss.

Leap added 318,346 new customers during the period, nearly triple what it did in 2006’s first quarter. That caused its total customer count to rise to more than 2.5 million, up 43 percent from the level it was in the prior year’s first quarter.

Leap said net customer additions in the second quarter should be in the range of 125,000 to 175,000.

Traded on Nasdaq under LEAP, shares closed May 8 at $79.46, and have ranged from $39.59 to $80.73 in the past 52 weeks.

, Mike Allen

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