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Cable Technology Feature Article

August 06, 2012

DirecTV Loses 52,000 Subscribers in Second Quarter of Fiscal Year

By Oliver VanDervoort, Contributing Writer

When DirecTV (News - Alert) and Viacom took their fight public, most of the public knew there might be repercussions. Whether the two warring companies knew that most of the repercussions would come in the form of losing customers was anyone’s guess, but there had to be some preparation for just such an occurrence. When the battle was finally ended, there was actually talk that perhaps both companies could claim victory, but it is looking as though DirecTV, at least, may have to admit the battle did it a little damage.

The fiscal reports for the second quarter of 2012 have just been released by DirecTV and the numbers aren’t remotely good for a company that relies on subscribers to keep afloat in a competitive cable business. While DirecTV has said that the April to June period of the year is the weakest period for the company most of the time, its loss of 52,000 subscribers is nothing to sneeze at. Last year, the company added 26,000 subscribers over the same period of time. 

The news was not all bad for DirecTV. The company did see a rapid increase in Latin America and that helped the company continue to turn a profit. Even with the good news, the profit was not where it was expected to be, despite being a slight improvement over the same period last year. DirecTV saw a net income of $711 million adding up to about $1.09 per share. In 2011’s second quarter, DirecTV got a net income of $701 million or $0.91 per share. Industry analysts had predicted that the satellite television company would see a net income somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.14 per share.

DirecTV also saw its revenue go up despite the subscriber loss at a pretty decent clip. DirecTV says that revenue rose to $7.2 billion, which is a nine-percent increase from a year ago at this time. Cable providers all over the country are starting to feel the pinch, as more people turn to iTunes and Netflix for their viewing pleasure. Live television is struggling to keep up with the low costs these kinds of services provide and cable companies really have come up with an answer.

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Edited by Brooke Neuman

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