DISH reports earnings, it’s not that bad

DISH has struggled with mixed results over the years, and this one is no different. The good news: revenues are up, mostly due to higher prices and customers taking more expensive packages. On the other hand, even counting its Sling TV customers, DISH lost about 281,000 subscribers in the last quarter.

What does this mean? It probably doesn’t mean much other than DISH’s stock will probably rise modestly because it’s continuing to make money. That’s all these financial reports are about. They’re required to report a lot of detail, but everyone wants to know, did they make money? And they did.

Obviously long term subscriber declines are going to be an issue, especially since we really don’t know how much of that decline is due to Sling TV and how much is due to the satellite service. It’s fair to say at this point that Sling TV hasn’t taken the world over yet, but give it time — most analysts believe the future of live TV is in streaming packages like this and it’s normal when you’re launching something completely new like this, that you go through some bumps in the road. Sling TV is now available on almost every major platform and it does continue to improve.

It’s hard to know what the real issue with satellite TV is for DISH, but since they’re now the only major player that can’t also offer internet service, and since most of the major players offer either home phone, cell phone, or both, you might be tempted to think that their lack of bundle-ability might be the issue. It does make sense if you think about it. There have been rumors of DISH looking for a suitor, and certainly we all remember the disastrous three-way fragmentation grenade that was DISH’s attempted purchase of Sprint. None of the companies involved has bounced back from that, even years later.

With investors happy for now, DISH doesn’t have a lot of pressure to focus on major change in the coming quarters, but the company has continued to innovate, with new 4K products and including its 16-tuner DVR, Hopper 3. DISH also dominates the RV market with HD products that work with smaller dishes and a month-to-month program for subscribers. So, I think they’ll be fine.

In the interest of satisfying those stock watchers, I’ve included DISH’s press release below. Read it if you choose, I won’t be hurt if you don’t.

[pressrelease]ENGLEWOOD, Colo.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– DISH Network Corp. (NASDAQ: DISH) today reported revenue totaling $3.84 billion for the quarter ending June 30, 2016, compared to $3.83 billion for the corresponding period in 2015. Subscriber-related revenue increased to $3.83 billion from $3.80 billion in the year-ago period. Net income attributable to DISH Network totaled $410 million for the second quarter 2016, compared with $324 million from the year-ago quarter. Diluted earnings per share were $0.88 for the second quarter, compared with $0.70 during the same period in 2015.

DISH includes all of its Sling TV subscribers in the company’s total Pay-TV metrics, including in the Pay-TV subscriber, Pay-TV ARPU and Pay-TV churn rate numbers set forth below. Sling TV subscribers are reported net of disconnects in our gross new Pay-TV subscriber activations.

In the second quarter, DISH activated approximately 527,000 gross new Pay-TV subscribers compared to approximately 638,000 gross new Pay-TV subscribers in the prior year’s second quarter. Net Pay-TV subscribers declined approximately 281,000 in the second quarter, compared to a loss of approximately 81,000 in the second quarter 2015.

The company closed the second quarter with 13.593 million Pay-TV subscribers, compared to 13.932 million Pay-TV subscribers at the end of second quarter 2015.

Pay-TV ARPU for the second quarter totaled $89.98, compared to second quarter 2015 Pay-TV ARPU of $87.91. Pay-TV subscriber churn rate was 1.96 percent versus 1.71 percent for second quarter 2015.

DISH lost approximately 15,000 net broadband subscribers in the second quarter, bringing its broadband subscriber base to approximately 613,000.
Year-to-Date Review
DISH Network’s first-half 2016 revenue totaled $7.62 billion, compared to $7.56 billion in revenue from the same period last year. In the first six months of 2016, net income attributable to DISH Network totaled $800 million, compared with $676 million during the same period last year. Diluted earnings per share were $1.72 for the first six months of 2016, compared with $1.46 during the same period in 2015.

Detailed financial data and other information are available in DISH Network’s Form 10-Q for the quarter ended June 30, 2016, filed today with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

DISH Network will host its second quarter 2016 financial results conference call today at noon Eastern time. The dial-in numbers are (800) 616-6729 (U.S.) and (763) 488-9145, conference ID number 49819108. A webcast replay will be available on DISH’s Investor Relations website [http://dish.client.shareholder.com] today from 6 p.m. to 12 a.m. ET. [/pressrelease]