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Ergen to take the reins once again at Dish

Charlie Ergen

Charlie Ergen

Charlie Ergen, chairman of US DTH pay TV provider Dish Network, is to once again take the reins of the company he founded as president and CEO on the retirement of the current chief executive Joseph Clayton at the end of March. 

Ergen’s resumption of the chief executive role follows the company’s acquisition of US$13 billion (€11.5 billion) worth of wireless spectrum in the latest FCC spectrum auction in January, topping up a portfolio of wireless spectrum assets valued at about US$50 billion. Dish has yet to set out exactly what it plans to do in wireless.

Dish also recently launched a Sling-branded OTT service, offering a bundle of channels for US$20 a month.

The news came as Dish Network reported better than expected fourth quarter results, although full-year figures fell short of earlier estimates.

Dish Network reported 2014 total revenue of US14.6 billion compared to US$13.9 billion in 2013, an increase of 5.3%. Net income in 2014 increased 17% to US$945 million from US$807 million in 2013.

Pay TV average monthly revenue per subscriber was US$83.77 during 2014 versus US$80.37 in 2013. Pay TV average monthly subscriber churn for 2014 increased slightly to 1.59% from 1.58% in 2013.

The company lost about 79,000 pay TV subscribers in the course of the year.