Sep. 12, 2014, 11:01 AM
- DirecTV (DTV) CEO Mike White revealed during his talk at the Goldman Sachs Communicopia Conference that the company expects to launch a Hispanic online TV product by the end of the year.
- YaVeo is expected to have primarily on-demand programming.
- Management says the merger with AT&T T is on track. A closing during the first half of 2015 is still expected.
- Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference webcast prior coverage
Sep. 12, 2014, 10:08 AM
- DirecTV (DTV) CEO Mike White says he expects the company to finalize a renewal with the NFL for the rights to the Sunday Ticket package by the end of the year.
- The Sunday ticket deal has been closely watched in the industry with the lurking threat that a tech heavyweight would sweep in to grab the highly-coveted content for an online TV service.
Sep. 11, 2014, 2:05 PM
- The state attorneys general now working with the Justice Department to determine whether Comcast's deal to buy Time Warner Cable is legal have expanded their investigation to include AT&T's (T +0.2%) proposed $48.5B deal to buy DirecTV (DTV +0.1%), Reuters reports.
- New York and California are part of the multi-state review, according to the report.
Sep. 8, 2014, 2:39 PM
- A new report from Nielsen puts some numbers to the escalating transition of TV viewing toward digital channels.
- In the key 18-34 year old demographic, digital video consumption rose 53% to 35 minutes a day.
- The digital growth rate was even higher for the 35-49 year old group with a 80% rise to 26 minutes a day.
- 50-64 year olds increased digital viewing by 60%.
- Live TV viewing dropped 1%-2% across age groups.
- Related stocks: CHTR, CVC, TWC, NFLX, DISH, DTV, VZ,
- Nielsen Cross-Platform Report
Aug. 28, 2014, 1:36 PM
- Pay-TV operators are having a tough week on the operational side as a Midwest service disruption at DirecTV (DTV +0.2%) follows closely behind high-profile national outages at Charter Communications and Time Warner Cable.
- The troubling service blackouts by the cable and satellite players hasn't gone unnoticed by consumer groups which are using the development as leverage in protesting the Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) - Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) merger.
Aug. 25, 2014, 12:34 PM
- DirecTV (DTV +0.7%) is close to signing a deal with the NFL to extend the Sunday Ticket package, according to Sports Business Daily.
- The pro football rights will cost the company $1.3B-$1.4B per year over the course of the contract - compared to the average $1B it pays now.
- The current Sunday Ticket contract expires at the end of the season.
- The NFL will bring in close to $7B per year in carriage fees next season from carriers CBS, DirecTV, ESPN, Fox, NBC, and Verizon.
Aug. 25, 2014, 12:25 PM
- The NY Post reports AT&T (T +0.1%) has reached an agreement with the DOJ that paves the way for the agency to clear the DirecTV (DTV +0.8%) merger. No details are given on what conditions AT&T has agreed to.
- Regulators have been expected to sign off on the $48.5B merger, in spite of concerns about its potential impact on pay-TV prices in areas where AT&T and DirecTV currently compete.
- AT&T has tried to appease regulators by promising (among other things) to continue offering DirecTV's services on a standalone basis for 3 years, and to make big rural broadband investments.
- In addition to the DOJ, the FCC is reviewing the merger.
Aug. 21, 2014, 11:43 AM
- Hedge funds are having a difficult time of it again this year, up 1% vs. a 7.5% gain for the S&P 500, according to Goldman Sachs, which crunched the numbers on 775 funds with $1.9T in AUM.
- Nevertheless, Goldman's list of 50 stocks which "matter most" to hedge funds has outperformed the S&P 500 on a quarterly basis 66% of the time since 2001. The stocks this quarter (posted in order of the number of funds in which a name is a top-10 holding):
- ACT, AAPL, FB, AGN, AAL, GM, TWC, AIG, MSFT, HTZ, CHTR, MU, WMB, LNG, C, DAL, HCA, APC, CBS, ALLY, GOOGL, APD, NRF, BAC, EBAY, LBTYK, PCLN, VRX, BIDU, DTV, DISH, DG, EQIX, MA, WAG, ARCP, GILD, LINTA, MON, FOXA, VC, AMZN, BRK.A, BRK.B, SUNE, CMCSA, JPM, MIC, CCI, HES, LAMR.
- A special call-out to Northstar Realty (NYSE:NRF), Visteon (NYSE:VC), SunEdison (NYSE:SUNE), Macquarie Infrastructure (NYSE:MIC), and Lamar Advertising (NASDAQ:LAMR) for making the list of hedge fund hotels despite their relatively tiny market caps.
Aug. 18, 2014, 11:17 AM
- The battle between DirecTV (DTV) and Time Warner Cable (TWC +0.2%) on the West Coast has spilled over into football.
- DirecTV hasn't signed a deal to add Pac-12 football through Time Warner Cable's Sports Pass bundle for a reported price of $0.80 per subscriber.
- The satellite operator's subscribers will only have access to nationally broadcast Pac-12 football games.
- TWC and DirecTV are still in a stalemate over SportsNet LA which is the broadcaster of Los Angeles Dodgers baseball.
Aug. 15, 2014, 11:25 AM
- Cable and satellite providers ended Q2 with more broadband subscribers than video customers, according to Leichtman Research Group.
- An important distinction is that the pace of cord-cutting declined during the quarter as many customers simply shifted to packages such as U-verse or FiOS away from traditional cable.
- Analyst Craig Moffett notes the pay-TV industry is growing revenue at twice the clip as the wireless business which seems to defeat the suggestion of some that it's a dying entity.
- Related stocks: CHTR, CVC, TWC, DISH, DTV, VZ, T.
Aug. 15, 2014, 3:38 AM
- Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B), (BRK.A) disclosed a $366M stake in cable TV operator Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR) in the second quarter, according to a new regulatory filing. Shares of Charter have now rose more +2% in after-hours trading.
- The filing also detailed other new investments including a 1.3% raised stake in Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), and other increased holdings including IBM (NYSE:IBM) and Suncor Energy (NYSE:SU).
- However, Berkshire Hathaway reduced its stake in several companies, among them DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV).
Aug. 12, 2014, 1:40 PM
- 98% of millennials without a pay-TV subscription tell nScreenMedia that they have no interest in getting one in the future.
- The result of the survey flies in the face of the contention by some cable execs that millennials will jump into pay-TV packages when their earnings power increases.
- Currently, 19% of millennials don't have a pay-TV subscription.
- Media analysts thinks the best play by pay-TV operators to reel cord-cutters and cord-nevers back in would be to jump to 4K movie services via smart TVs. Set-top boxes which could handle the 4K format could roll out as soon as 2015.
- Related stocks: DTV, DISH, CVC, CHTR, CMCSA, TWC.
- nScreenMedia White Paper (sub required)
Jul. 31, 2014, 2:42 PM
- Sports were a big topic during DirecTV's (DTV -0.5%) earnings call this afternoon.
- The FIFA World Cup was the primary driver of subscriber additions in Q2.
- Discussions with Disney are going well. Rates have been agreed upon for a deal covering the SEC network.
- Management is very confident a deal will be struck to keep the NFL Sunday Ticket as part of its programming past this year. The package is considered integral to AT&T interest in the pay-TV operator. There is no change in thinking over opening up access to the premium package.
- On the stalemate with Time Warner Cable over SportsNet LA, execs say TWC wants the equivalent of $26 per subscriber for the sports package which included the Dodgers. Condolences are offered to Dodgers fans, but there's no room for optimism that a deal is imminent.
- Outside of sports, the company indicated that it expects free cash flow to grow over 10% Y/Y in 2014 with U.S. capex spending targeted to be lower.
- Earnings call webcast
Jul. 31, 2014, 8:58 AM
- Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) and AT&T (NYSE:T) kept a close eye on their acquisition prizes today as they both showed gains during Q2 for one of the most watched metrics in the pay-TV sector.
- Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) grew its average revenue per user by 1.7% to $106.98 and DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV) saw a 4.5% gain to $103.26 in the U.S.
- Merger synergies for the mega-deals are based on ever-rising ARPUs while scale brings down content and acquisition costs.
- Today's read from the pay-TV sector is that the U.S. consumer hasn't quite hit the breaking point yet on monthly bill charges.
- Regulatory watch: The FCC has started its merger review countdown clock by taking comments from consumer groups. Though Comcast maintains in government filings that acquiring TWC will help consumers, the focus on rising monthly pay-TV bills could take the steam out of that argument.
Jul. 31, 2014, 7:51 AM
- DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV) lost some ground with margin rates during Q2 due to higher programming and subscriber acquisition costs.
- The company saw its average revenue per user increase 4.53% to $103.26 in the U.S. during the quarter - an impressive gain compared to peers. The monthly churn rate was stable at 1.55%.
- Average revenue per user fell 4.6% in DirecTV Latin America. Currency swings and promotions may have been factors.
- Segment revenue: DirecTV U.S. +5.5% to $6.27B; Panamericana +4.6% to $778M, Sky Brasil +7.3% to $1.01B.
Jul. 31, 2014, 7:34 AM
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