Company Info
Investor Relations
Press Room

The following chronology documents the corporate history of Powertel, Inc. Click on a year to see the information.

1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001




Interstate Cellular, Inc., a Georgia corporation, is organized as a wholly owned subsidiary of ITC Holding Company, Inc. to acquire cellular telephone licenses and construct and operate cellular telephone systems.

The Company subsequently acquires FCC licenses enabling it to operate a cellular system in contiguous portions of four RSAs (rural service areas) in eastern Alabama and western Georgia. Interstate Cellular was the sole licensee for all parts of the Company system except for Harris County, Georgia, which was granted to a partnership (WHI Partnership) consisting of Interstate Cellular and Waverly Hall Telephone Company.

Back to Top


The Company begins commercial cellular operations with its first operational cell site located in Huguley, Alabama.

The Company generates $394,000 in revenue for the year.

Back to Top


InterCel, Inc. incorporated in Delaware.


Interstate Cellular transfers all assets and liabilities and Waverly Hall transfers its interests in WHI Partnership to InterCel, Inc.


InterCel files a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission to register up to 1.0 million shares of common stock for sale to the public.


InterCel completes initial public offering, selling 1.0 million shares of common stock for $5.25 per share resulting in net proceeds of $4.9 million.

During most of 1991, InterCel was in a start-up phase, concentrating on initial financing, acquisition of cellular licenses, and construction and initial operation of the Company’s cellular telephone system.

For 1991, InterCel reported revenues of $4.5 million on its first full year of operations. The Company ended the year with 4,608 cellular subscribers. Although the Company recorded a net loss of $728,000 for the year, operating income before amortization and depreciation turned positive in April after only seven months of operations.

Back to Top


InterCel’s cellular telephone service covers more than 259,000 people (1990 Census) and approximately 2,900 square miles including 100 miles of Interstate Highway 85 and 40 miles of Interstate Highway 185.

InterCel achieves it first profitable year, recording a net income of $100,294. Revenues increased 59 percent to a record $7.2 million. The number of cellular subscribers increased more than 62 percent to 7,447 people, far exceeding the estimated national average of 46 percent.

InterCel adds its eighth cell site, expanding coverage into Callaway Gardens, Waverly Hall, Pine Mountain and Hamilton, Georgia. The Company makes significant investments in a new billing system which helps improve both billing and customer service functions.

Back to Top


InterCel acquires Unicel, a cellular operator providing service in Maine, increasing the Company’s population base to 780,000 people and doubling the Company’s subscriber base to more than 20,000 people.

The Company adds its ninth cell site in Lafayette, Alabama, and its 10th cell site in McCollum, Georgia.

InterCel’s focus on quality operations and service is validated in an extensive customer survey. More than 93 percent of InterCel’s customers reported that the Company’s overall service met or exceeded their expectations. These results were also reflected in the Company’s low churn rate of 1.3 percent per month compared to the industry average of 2.4 percent.

InterCel reports record revenues, net income and subscriber additions. Revenues advanced 31 percent to $9.3 million, net income surpassed $1.0 million for the first time and subscribers rose 42 percent compared with 1992 to over 10,000.

Back to Top


InterCel completes public stock offering of 1.8 million shares, increasing shareholder equity by $13.6 million. InterCel listed on NASDAQ under the symbol "ICEL."

InterCel and other investors form Powertel PCS Partners L.P. (Powertel L.P.), a privately-held limited partnership, to develop, construct and operate a system that will provide wireless personal communications services (PCS) in a 122,000 square mile area covering portions of Mississippi, Alabama, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Georgia, Arkansas, Tennessee and Florida.

Aggressive marketing programs and an emphasis on quality service, together with the Unicel combination, are instrumental in record subscriber growth to 28,624 customers up 170 percent from year end 1993.

InterCel’s revenues increased 133 percent to $21.8 million. Net income increased 85 percent to $1.9 million.

Back to Top


Powertel L.P. submits winning bids for PCS licenses in three Major Trading Areas (MTAs) covering parts of nine southeastern states and including nine million people. The three MTAs include Jacksonville, Florida (2.3 million people in 50 counties), Birmingham, Alabama (3.2 million people in 53 counties) and Memphis, Tennessee (3.5 million people in 93 counties).

InterCel acquires Powertel L.P. and selects GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) for PCS network technology. GSM is the global technology standard for PCS.

InterCel begins construction of its PCS markets.

Company revenues rose 35 percent to a record $29 million and net income increased 60 percent to a record $3.0 million.

Back to Top


InterCel signs definitive agreement to purchase the Atlanta MTA PCS license from GTE Mobilnet, Inc. The Atlanta MTA covers seven million people.

The Company awards Ericsson, Inc. a $200 million contract to supply equipment for Powertel’s PCS system. Ericsson’s worldwide experience in supplying and deploying PCS systems is expected to facilitate the launch of Powertel’s PCS services by the end of 1996.


InterCel completes public offering of common stock and senior notes, raising approximately $515 million in aggregate gross proceeds. The Company also agrees to sell $150 million in preferred stock to SCANA Corporation and Ericsson, Inc.

Powertel enters FCC D, E, and F auction to increase its contiguous footprint.


Powertel becomes one of the first PCS operators to launch commercial service in the United States, opening the Jacksonville, Florida, and Montgomery, Alabama, markets. Before year end, Powertel launches service in 15 markets and signs agreements to distribute Powertel PCS products and services through mass merchants including Radio Shack, Circuit City, Office Depot, Office Max and Service Merchandise.


InterCel enters into a definitive agreement to sell the operations of Unicel, the Company’s Maine cellular property, for $77 million to Rural Cellular Corporation.

Powertel launches its Prestige Partners promotion, whereby customers can purchase unlimited PCS services for $50 per month.

The Company reports net revenues of $39.1 million versus $29.3 million in 1995. The increase in revenues was due to the continued growth of InterCel’s cellular operations and the addition of approximately 15,000 PCS customers. InterCel reports a net loss of $25.0 million due to the roll out of PCS services.

Back to Top


Powertel adds one millionth customer on Tuesday, March 20, 2001.

Back to Top

Company Facts
Tech Links
Powertel Racing
> Earnings Release Webcast
Store Locator FAQs Contact Us Search