A report from Moffett Research LLC is claiming that Verizon Wireless may end up owing Apple as much as $14 billion for iPhone sales (via Bloomberg). The wireless carrier will apparently owe the money to Apple due to its purchase commitments over time, failing to sell an agreed number of handsets during a given period. According to telecommunications analyst Craig Moffett, Verizon is obligated to buy $23.5 billion worth of iPhones in 2013 alone.
The analyst notes that Verizon signed a multiyear sales deal with Apple back in 2010. With Verizon’s purchase commitment being more than twice than what it sold during 2012, the company may have a shortfall of $12 billion to $14 billion. Moffett says that Apple won’t simply ignore these commitments, and will most likely “extract some consideration for renegotiating these shortfalls”. He further said that these contractual obligations with Apple may be the reason why some carriers are holding out on partnering with the Cupertino company.
“The report suggests sluggish demand for the iPhone, which accounts for about half of Apple’s sales. Other wireless providers around the world may be experiencing iPhone sales deficits as well, Moffett said. The sales shortfall bolsters analysts’ projectionfor Apple to report a 22 percent decline in net income to $6.87 billion in the third fiscal quarter, according to the average of estimates compiled by Bloomberg”.
Spokespersons for both Verizon and Apple declined to comment on iPhone purchase commitments.