EarthLink on AOL Dialup Acquisition: We Wanted To Buy, But Too Late Now; Other Bigger Options

EarthLink announced its Q4 earnings yesterday and the numbers as with others were mixed: it had a profit of $27.3 million compared with a loss of $9.5 million in the year ago quarter (when it was laden with Helio debt/investment and mini WiFi projects as well)…these results include a $78.7 million non-cash impairment charge, partially offset by a $56.1 million tax benefit. Its revenue fell 23 percent to $216.1 million, from $282 million in the year-ago quarter, mainly due to continuing decline in its dialup sub and revenue numbers.

The main query to ELNK CEO Rolla Huff on the earnings call: its interest in buying AOL’s dialup business from Time Warner (NYSE: TWX). In the earnings call two quarters ago, Huff was a lot more enthusiastic about it: