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DISH Network Corp Beats Earnings Estimates Despite Soft Sales, Announces Satellite Broadband Deal

By Anders Bylund – Feb 21, 2014 at 10:13AM

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Dish Network beat Wall Street's earnings targets in the fourth quarter, in spite of stagnant subscriber growth and weak revenues.

Image source: Dish Network.

Shares of DISH Network (DISH -3.06%) opened 3.2% higher on Friday, following the early morning release of fourth-quarter results and filing of a 10K report for 2013.

The satellite broadcaster saw sales falling 14% year over year to land at $3.1 billion. Earnings jumped 37% higher, stopping at $0.63 per share. Analysts were expecting earnings around $0.41 per share on $3.6 billion in sales.

After closing the last Blockbuster video stores and shuttering Blockbuster's DVD-by-mail service in the fourth quarter, Dish has recast Blockbuster as a discontinued operation in these financial reports.

Dish ended 2013 with 14.057 million pay-TV subscribers. That's 8,000 net new subscribers in the fourth quarter and a gain of 1,000 subscribers in 2013. These figures are the net of 2.7 million gross new accounts and a 1.58% monthly subscriber churn.

Just before filing these reports, Dish signed a deal with corporate sibling EchoStar Communications (SATS -2.14%) where Dish gives EchoStar five of its satellites and $11 million in cash, leasing back some of the satellites' capacity. In return, Dish received enough tracking stock to give it 80% ownership of EchoStar's residential satellite broadband operations -- a fast-growing business that's still in its infancy.

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Anders Bylund has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned.

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